Patterico's Pontifications

4/26/2024

Weekend Open Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:13 am



[guest post by Dana]

Let’s go!

First news item

Palestinian woman addresses protesters: Hey kids, you’re hurting our cause:

Protests are spreading across the United States at college campuses, where university students are gathering in the name of Palestinian rights and occupying campus spaces with tents. Sadly, not everyone who purports to support Palestinians is truly interested in safeguarding our rights.

It pains me to say this as a Palestinian from Gaza. As my home is destroyed and too many killed, I never thought I would find myself criticizing those speaking up. And yet, I cannot be silent about what I am seeing. The truth is that the manner in which many gather to voice their support for Palestinians does more to hurt our cause than help it.

You know what would help the Palestinians in Gaza? Condemning Hamas’ atrocities. Instead, the protesters routinely chant their desire to “Globalize the Intifada.” Apparently they do not realize that the Intifadas were disastrous for both Palestinians and Israelis, just as October 7 has been devastating for the people of Gaza.

They should be speaking up for the innocent victims of Hamas—both Palestinian and Israeli. Instead, they endorse Hamas’s ideology with posters announcing resistance “by any means necessary” and chants of “from the river to the sea,” effectively glorifying the Al-Qassam brigades, Hamas’ military wing, whose ideology is entirely based on the elimination of more than 6 million Israelis from the land.

I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve said that it is Hamas that, first and foremost, must be condemned, and the pressure should be continually increasing with each and every passing day.

Weak sauce, but better late than ever:

The United States and 17 other countries demanded Hamas release all the hostages it holds in Gaza as Biden administration officials tried to ratchet up global pressure on the militant group, which the White House blames for blocking a cease-fire deal that would see the release of hostages.

“We call for the immediate release of all hostages held by Hamas in Gaza for over 200 days. They include our own citizens,” the joint statement said. “The fate of the hostages and the civilian population in Gaza, who are protected under international law, is of international concern.”

The letter was signed by the leaders of the U.S., Argentina, Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Spain, Thailand and the United Kingdom.

“We emphasize that the deal on the table to release the hostages would bring an immediate and prolonged ceasefire in Gaza, that would facilitate a surge of additional necessary humanitarian assistance to be delivered throughout Gaza, and lead to the credible end of hostilities,” the statement said. “Gazans would be able to return to their homes and their lands with preparations beforehand to ensure shelter and humanitarian provisions.”

Second news item

Remember when President Biden announced that a humanitarian pier would be built floating off the coast of Gaza so that aid could more easily reach those in desperate need? Unfortunately, not everyone is on board with the project:

Gaza-based militants launched mortar rounds on Wednesday at Israeli forces making preparations for the U.S.-led effort to establish a new maritime aid route for Gaza, according to three U.S. officials.

No American equipment was damaged as the U.S.-led project — which will establish a pier a few miles offshore as well as a causeway anchored to the beach to expand access to humanitarian aid — is not yet complete, said one of the officials. All were granted anonymity to discuss sensitive plans.

But the attack came as U.S. military personnel were scheduled to soon begin construction of the pier, which the U.S. hopes will drastically expand the amount of aid that can reach the enclave.

Third news item

The vile Harvey Weinstein had his rape conviction overturned by a New York appeals court in a 4-3 ruling:

In the appeal, Weinstein’s legal team argued that he was judged on “irrelevant, prejudicial and untested allegations of prior bad acts,” per the court order.

“The remedy for these egregious errors is a new trial,” the court said.

Per the report, Weinstein’s 16-year sentence for a rape conviction in California will not be affected by this.

Fourth news item

Morehouse students unhappy with selection of President Biden as commencement speaker:

Morehouse College, a nearly 160-year-old historically Black college in Atlanta, announced on Tuesday that Joe Biden will be the keynote speaker for its commencement ceremony in May.

Anwar Karim, a sophomore and political science major, said that when he found out that the president would speak at graduation, he was “utterly disappointed, but not surprised”. He said that he had been active with other students in speaking out about injustices around the campus, including the Israel-Gaza war and local issues in Atlanta such as the development of the Cop City law enforcement training center.

“It’s absolutely unacceptable for [a historically Black college and university] that prides itself on social justice,” Karim said. “We always want to talk about [Morehouse alum] Dr Martin Luther King Jr, and we always want to talk about the history of activism and leadership that this school has. And yet this decision does not reflect that history of social justice.”

Some students condemned Biden and his administration not only for the president’s actions supporting the war in Gaza, but also for what they say looks like an attempt to turn the students’ graduation ceremony into a campaign stop. “It’s just not a smart move to make, to just allow your students and your school to be used as a political pawn to get Black votes,” said Malik, a Morehouse senior who asked that his last name be withheld.

Lonnie White, a Morehouse junior, said that students have created a petition for the school to rescind the invite. Alumni have also circulated their own petition…

“To have Biden come here, to this campus, to this area, especially during an election year – it’s definitely pandering. We can’t invite anybody else that would actually have an insightful message to the Black students graduating? We have to have Mr 1994 Crime Bill?”

Ouch!

But it’s true that the Biden camp is working overtime to gain the Black vote, which they most definitely need in the key states. And it’s an uphill climb:

It’s not just Wisconsin, though. CNN’s conversations with two dozen top Biden campaign aides, elected officials across the country and voters on the ground in several key states detail a frantic fight that is much bigger than what’s going on in north Milwaukee. Because the president’s hopes in almost every battleground state depend on cities like Detroit, Philadelphia, Charlotte and Atlanta, his chances of winning may come down to whether he can reverse the trend among Black voters — particularly Black men.

And while leading Black Democrats mock and decry Trump’s claims that he is appealing to Black voters by promoting his branded sneakers and saying they can now relate to him because he has a mug shot, they more quietly acknowledge that he seems well-positioned to capitalize on that disaffection all the way through November.

Already, there have been polls showing the presumptive GOP nominee increasing his share of the Black vote.

Fifth news item

Another issue of concern for President Biden:

Half of Americans — including 42% of Democrats — say they’d support mass deportations of undocumented immigrants, according to a new Axios Vibes survey by The Harris Poll.

And 30% of Democrats — as well as 46% of Republicans — now say they’d end birthright citizenship, something guaranteed under the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.

Additionally:

President Biden is keenly aware the crisis threatens his re-election. He’s sought to flip the script by accusing Trump of sabotaging Congress’ most conservative bipartisan immigration bill in decades.

But when it comes to blame, Biden so far has failed to shift the narrative: 32% of respondents say his administration is “most responsible” for the crisis, outranking any other political or structural factor.

Sixth news item

Arizona indicts 18 for election interference:

An Arizona grand jury has indicted former President Donald Trump ‘s chief of staff Mark Meadows, lawyer Rudy Giuliani and 16 others for their roles in an attempt to overturn Trump’s loss to Joe Biden in the 2020 election.

The indictment released Wednesday names 11 Republicans who submitted a document to Congress falsely declaring that Trump won Arizona in 2020. They include the former state party chair, a 2022 U.S. Senate candidate and two sitting state lawmakers, who are charged with nine counts each of conspiracy, fraud and forgery…The 11 people who had been nominated to be Arizona’s Republican electors met in Phoenix on Dec. 14, 2020, to sign a certificate saying they were “duly elected and qualified” electors and claiming that Trump carried the state. A one-minute video of the signing ceremony was posted on social media by the Arizona Republican Party at the time. The document was later sent to Congress and the National Archives, where it was ignored.

All the names were not revealed as they had not yet been served papers. Donald Trump was not indicted, but was named as a co-conspirator. And John Eastman was also on the list.

Seventh news item

Unintended consequences:

Safety concerns stemming from anti-Israel campus protests at Columbia University have caused fear among prospective students who no longer want to attend the school, a college consultant tells Fox News Digital.

Anti-Israeli demonstrations have escalated at elite U.S. universities in response to Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack and Israel’s retaliatory attacks on Gaza, with many colleges, including Columbia University, seeing protests paired with antisemitic incidents that have left many Jewish students feeling unsafe.

he campus hostility and antisemitic accusations have even led some aspiring students to look elsewhere, according to a New York-based college consultant, who said only one of around a dozen accepted Columbia students he’s working with is still considering attending.

Surely more will follow this lead. Parents sending their kids off to college, want and expect – at the very least – to know that their kids will be safe on campus. It will be interesting to see the full impact on enrollment at the ivies, when all is said and done.

Eighth news item

After the Biden administration made changes to Title IX that “add protections for transgender students to the federal civil rights law on sex-based discrimination,” Gov. DeSantis of Florida said “no thanks”:

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said Thursday his state “will not comply” with recently unveiled changes to Title IX by the Biden administration.

“Florida rejects [President Biden’s] attempt to rewrite Title IX,” DeSantis said in a video posted to the social platform X. “We will not comply, and we will fight back.”

“We are not gonna let Joe Biden try to inject men into women’s activities,” DeSantis continued. “We are not gonna let Joe Biden undermine the rights of parents, and we are not gonna let Joe Biden abuse his constitutional authority to try to impose these policies on us here in Florida.”

Ninth news item

Over at The Bulwark, Presidential official acts and private acts:

Judging by their questions, what the conservative [justices] are evidently willing to do is manufacture some form of criminal immunity that will be governed by a private-versus-official conduct standard (with only official conduct protected), and then send the case back to District Judge Tany Chutkan to parse Special Counsel Jack Smith’s January 6th indictment of Trump and excise the parts for which Trump would be protected under the Court’s newly minted criminal immunity test. How the court will draw the line between official and private conduct is anyone’s guess, particularly if presidents abuse official powers for purely personal gain. That would be a win for the insurrectionist-in-chief. . .

Anything but the narrowest immunity doctrine would mean far broader protections for future presidents seeking to dodge accountability for bad deeds. Depending on how the Court writes its opinion—and how far future presidents, White House counsels, attorneys general, and Department of Justice lawyers are willing to stretch their words—large swaths of presidential action that were unimaginable before Trump could become not just real but protected.

Have a good weekend.

–Dana

423 Responses to “Weekend Open Thread”

  1. Happy Friday!

    Dana (8e902f)

  2. Here’s a happy thought from the WSJ:

    Trump Allies Draw Up Plans to Blunt Fed’s Independence

    Donald Trump’s allies are quietly drafting proposals that would attempt to erode the Federal Reserve’s independence if the former president wins a second term, in the midst of a deepening divide among his advisers over how aggressively to challenge the central bank’s authority.

    Former Trump administration officials and other supporters of the presumptive GOP nominee have in recent months discussed a range of proposals, from incremental policy changes to a long-shot assertion that the president himself should play a role in setting interest rates. A small group of the former president’s allies—whose work is so secretive that even some prominent former Trump economic aides weren’t aware of it—has produced a roughly 10-page document outlining a policy vision for the central bank, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The group of Trump allies argues that he should be consulted on interest-rate decisions, and the draft document recommends subjecting Fed regulations to White House review and more forcefully using the Treasury Department as a check on the central bank. The group also contends that Trump, if he returns to the White House, would have the authority to oust Jerome Powell as Fed chair before his four-year term ends in 2026, the people familiar with the matter said, though Powell would likely remain on the Fed’s board of governors.

    It couldn’t be determined whether Trump is aware of or signed off on the effort, but some people close to the discussions believe the work has received the blessing of the former president.

    So, all you have to do to predict Fed decisions under this plan would be to watch Jared Kurschner’s market moves the day before.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  3. I am expecting Hamas to offer replacement commencement speakers for US universities that are riven by demonstrations.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  4. Anything but the narrowest immunity doctrine would mean far broader protections for future presidents seeking to dodge accountability for bad deeds. Depending on how the Court writes its opinion—and how far future presidents, White House counsels, attorneys general, and Department of Justice lawyers are willing to stretch their words—large swaths of presidential action that were unimaginable before Trump could become not just real but protected.

    For example, presidents might feel able to conduct drone strikes on US citizens overseas who were aiding and abetting terrorism.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  5. Regarding official presidential acts, Ms. Cheney speaks with her usual clarity and common sense, but she can dispense with the double spaces after her sentences.

    POTUS has no official role in the 1/6 count. When a candidate pressures/threatens the President of the Senate (Pence), pressures and lobbies state legislatures & members of Congress, and oversees a fraudulent elector scheme, his acts are private. And plotting to appoint an AG in a quid pro quo for help on 1/6 parallels CJ Roberts’ bribery hypo.

    Trump told SCOTUS in his 12/9/20 brief that he was filing in his “personal capacity as a candidate.” The Court need not resolve more difficult immunity Qs not at issue here. Rule quickly and decisively.

    Paul Montagu (895dc0)

  6. large swaths of presidential action that were unimaginable before Trump could become not just real but protected.

    Like the Executive covering up the facilitating of guns walking into Mexico?

    BuDuh (550a53)

  7. @5 Apparently, Liz Cheney feels denying Trump’s immunity claim would still keep her and her dad safe from prosecution for war crimes, a fraudulent pretext for war, and enhanced interrogation techniques. Or, more likely, she figures her immunity derives from having wedded herself to the Left, in which case she’s not wrong.

    lloyd (83a2d6)

  8. Marc Thiessen follows up:

    Many Americans don’t realize that the great majority of the military aid Congress approves for Ukraine stays right here in America — replenishing U.S. weapons stockpiles, strengthening our defense industrial base and creating good manufacturing jobs for American workers. So last week, I offered detailed maps showing all the U.S. states and congressional districts receiving Ukraine aid money. And I promised to let you know which House members and senators voted against new aid that directly benefits their constituents.
    . . .
    The bad news? As the above maps show, 31 senators and House members opposed the aid that is creating good jobs for the communities they represent while stopping Russian forces massacring innocent Ukrainian men, women and children.

    In the Senate, there was a single package of all the aid bills (and the ban on the ChiCom’s TikTok). Fifteen senators with spending for their states in the bill opposed it, led by Vermont leftists Bernie Sanders(I) and Peter Welch(D). (Rand Paul and Tommy Tuberville opposed it, but did not actually vote against it.)

    (In a separate piece Glenn Kessler showed that about 80 percent of the aid for Ukraine is being spent in the US.)

    Jim Miller (ac3118)

  9. Soros is funding the anti-Semitic pro-kidnapping campus protests, and naturally outlets on the Left desperately want to debunk that claim. Soros also funds Left wing soft on crime DAs and soft on crime Democrats. It’s at least a good sign that Soros funding pro-Hamas protests is seen as bad PR, for now, but the attempts to debunk the claim are strained and comical, as if it’s based solely on similar looking tents. Democrats accepting Soros money would be exposed by an objective media, rather than shielded.

    lloyd (83a2d6)

  10. Four years ago:

    Glenn Kessler
    @GlennKesslerWP
    I fear @tedcruz missed the scientific animation in the video that shows how it is virtually impossible for this virus jump from the lab. Or the many interviews with actual scientists. We deal in facts, and viewers can judge for themselves.

    Good times.

    lloyd (83a2d6)

  11. @4

    Anything but the narrowest immunity doctrine would mean far broader protections for future presidents seeking to dodge accountability for bad deeds. Depending on how the Court writes its opinion—and how far future presidents, White House counsels, attorneys general, and Department of Justice lawyers are willing to stretch their words—large swaths of presidential action that were unimaginable before Trump could become not just real but protected.

    For example, presidents might feel able to conduct drone strikes on US citizens overseas who were aiding and abetting terrorism.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/26/2024 @ 8:45 am

    https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2024/04/26/immunity_for_me_but_not_for_thee_1027716.html
    This struck me as balanced too..

    whembly (86df54)

  12. Karma, or Man Bites Dog?

    Thieves broke into the car of U.S. Senate candidate Adam Schiff, who was in San Francisco for an event – forcing a change of plans, specifically his attire, for one of his events.

    Schiff’s car was in a downtown parking garage on Thursday when his luggage was stolen.

    In a photo provided by Schiff’s PR agent, Schiff spoke at a campaign event in Burlingame at Ristorante Rocca dressed more casually than his guests, who were in suits and ties.

    lloyd (83a2d6)

  13. Ted Cruz was one of the fifteen senators who opposed the aid package for Israel, Taiwan, and Ukraine. (The package also includes a ban on TikTok, which anyone who understands the extent of ChiCom spying should favor.)

    His career after leaving the Bush administration reminds me of GWB’s line about Bill Clinton: “All that talent. Wasted.”

    Jim Miller (ac3118)

  14. #8

    Apparently, Liz Cheney feels denying Trump’s immunity claim would still keep her and her dad safe from prosecution for war crimes, a fraudulent pretext for war, and enhanced interrogation techniques

    It strikes me how easily our Trump fans drift over to the old Darth Cheney propaganda from 2007.

    Appalled (3d7942)

  15. Hopefully this will open some eyes here. (If you’re gonna dream, dream BIG.)

    https://hotair.com/david-strom/2024/04/25/alexandra-pelosi-january-6th-defendants-treated-unfairly-n3787141

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  16. More dreams, although I’d love for this one to come true:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LprQzYlcUgo

    And finally some decency from Hollywood (not a right-leaning celeb like Patricia Heaton, either):

    https://www.hollywoodintoto.com/david-schwimmer-campus-protests-antisemitism/?utm_source=feedly&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=david-schwimmer-campus-protests-antisemitism

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  17. RIP Mike Pinder, founding (and last surviving original) member and keyboardist of The Moody Blues (82):

    ………….
    Pinder was among the founding members of the Moody Blues — along with Denny Laine, Graeme Edge, Ray Thomas, and Clint Warwick — in 1964. That lineup released their breakthrough single, a cover of “Go Now,” that same year. On the band’s 1965 debut album, The Magnificent Moodies, Pinder is responsible for co-writing (with Laine) all the band’s original songs on the LP. However, after the success of “Go Now,” “Our management had disappeared with the money. One day, we went to the office, and they had basically vanished. They had gone bankrupt, and we were broke,” Pinder told Rolling Stone in 2018.

    Soon after, Laine and Warwick left the Moody Blues, and it was Pinder who is credited with enlisting Laine’s replacement, singer Justin Hayward, who, with also-added bassist John Lodge, would form the Moody Blues’ “classic” lineup. “I’d written some songs and sent them to Eric Burdon [of the Animals]. Unbeknownst to me he passed them to Mike Pinder in the Moodies and soon I had a call from Mike. I came up to London to meet him and we got on,” Hayward told Rolling Stone.

    That quintet — Pinder, Hayward, Lodge, Thomas, and Edge — would record the band’s next eight albums together, stretching from 1967’s Days of Future Passed to 1978’s Octave, with Pinder contributing piano and keyboards while pushing the Moody Blues toward progressive rock with his pioneering use of the Mellotron.
    ……………

    Nights in White Satin (written by Hayward) was a prom theme staple and included Pinder on the Mellotron.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  18. Donald Trump’s allies are quietly drafting proposals that would attempt to erode the Federal Reserve’s independence if the former president wins a second term, in the midst of a deepening divide among his advisers over how aggressively to challenge the central bank’s authority.

    This actually would be good, in my opinion, because the theory it is operating under is wrong and always has been.

    raising interest rates causes inflation and it does so almost immediately, but the Fed thinks nothing can affect the rate of inflation that fast and that they waited just a tiny bit too long.

    There is no substitute for the US Dollar as a reserve currency. Or a dominant one.

    But one thing: Trump originally Jerome Powell.

    But it is not necessary to change a law for a president to play hardball with the Fed.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  19. Speaking of the Moody Blues, has anyone else ever noticed how poor their very first 1964 hit, “Go Now,” has always sounded? Love the song, but something was REALLY wrong with that master tape.

    For those who know about tape recording, it always sounded horribly overmodulated. (In other words, the meters went way into the red on the mixing board).

    It’s been claimed that for whatever reason, the original master was somehow lost or destroyed right after recording, so Decca records had to create every LP and 45 of the song from an inferior-quality acetate safety copy.

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  20. I want I want I want

    Too bad it’s illegal in California.

    Rip Murdock (51f0c3)

  21. Everybody look for Rip’s latest business venture, Chick-ExtraSuperCrispy-A. 😉

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  22. lloyd (83a2d6) — 4/26/2024 @ 9:32 am

    Soros is funding the anti-Semitic pro-kidnapping campus protests, and naturally outlets on the Left desperately want to debunk that claim.

    He (pr rather his son now) is hardly the only source.

    This is the way I would guess at this point (combined sources)

    The protests are being organized by “Students for Justice for Palestine” But they only spend money. They get money from at least two nonprofits (for which contributions are tax deductible, because the law hasn’t come close to catching up with what they are really promoting.)

    The nonprofits get laundered money from foreign sources.

    https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/s-palestinian-protests-us-rcna143666

    NBC News examined links to an organization banned by Germany and Israel but found no direct financial ties to any U.S.-designated terrorist groups.

    Well, of course. It’s not coming from Hamas. It’s coming from Hamas supporters. .
    Probably including several countries, including China or under the protection of China.

    Hamas is not its own boss. They’d have to completely irrational – more irrational than humanly possible – if they were their own boss. Ira at least is above Hamas. Iran wouldn’t have supported a group it did not feel it controls. And Iran is backed by others, probably with a goal of seeing what happens.

    To understand which groups are organizing the protests and any potential ties to foreign groups, NBC News reviewed the tax filings and social media posts of the organizations behind the highest-profile demonstrations, as well as court filings, government reports and legislative hearings related to the pro-Palestinian movement in America. ..

    ….What did emerge is a vast network that includes left-leaning, billion-dollar American philanthropies and collaboration with at least one foreign organization that Germany and Israel have banned for allegedly working with or supporting Hamas and another terrorist group.

    The movement overall appears grassroots, with localized efforts that coordinate primarily through social media using apps such as Telegram, X, WhatsApp and Instagram.

    Nerdeen Kiswani is emblematic of the movement. Kiswani, 29, a law school graduate, founded the group Within Our Lifetime nearly a decade ago to build a community for young people who want to raise awareness for the Palestinian cause. With little more than social media posts, Kiswani, a Palestinian American activist raised in Brooklyn, New York, can attract thousands of New Yorkers to clog shopping districts, transit hubs and even roads to the airport — and bring them to a standstill.

    “I just support the Palestinian people as a whole, and I believe that we have the right to resist,” Kiswani said. “If they’re mad at it, they can talk to Biden, they can talk to the secretary of state, they can talk to the elected officials who keep funding wars abroad, who keep funding death and killing in our name, with our tax dollars.”

    Right to resist = right to commit acts of terrorism because that’s all characterized by Hamas as resistance.

    Protest organizers say their aims are simple but far-reaching: to push lawmakers to stop giving money and weapons to Israel while getting Democratic voters to boycott President Joe Biden as political retribution for his support of Israel as large numbers of Gazans are being killed.

    I guess they must be aiming at the 2028 election.

    Soros also funds Left wing soft on crime DAs and soft on crime Democrats. It’s at least a good sign that Soros funding pro-Hamas protests is seen as bad PR, for now, but the attempts to debunk the claim are strained and comical, as if it’s based solely on similar looking tents. Democrats accepting Soros money would be exposed by an objective media, rather than shielded

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  23. Soros funds…comes from lloyd. Not NBC.

    More on source of financing, from NBC News in March.

    Several of the pro-Palestinian organizations, including Within Our Lifetime and the U.S. Palestinian Community Network, do not have public tax filings. However, they and several other groups use a progressive nonprofit group based in New York called Westchester People’s Action Coalition Foundation, or WESPAC, as their fiscal sponsor to collect and process online donations. U.S. tax law allows nonprofit groups with 501(c)(3) status to collect money on behalf of smaller groups.

    Howard Horowitz, WESPAC’s board chair, declined to share its financial filings for the organizations it sponsors.

    “Isn’t the big story the ongoing genocide in Gaza?” Horowitz said in an email.

    Other groups have backing from major U.S. foundations. IfNotNow, an organization with the stated aim to “end U.S. support for Israel’s apartheid system,” was awarded $100,000 during the past five years by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a decades-old philanthropy based in New York. The fund has awarded close to a half-million dollars over the same period to Jewish Voice for Peace, another Palestinian rights organization.

    “I think protests and civil disobedience, as long as it’s nonviolent, is an effective tool, and that’s why we support some groups that use that tool,” said Stephen Heintz, the president and CEO of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.

    The Open Society Foundation, established by George Soros, has also given grants to Jewish Voice for Peace. A spokesperson said the foundation’s goal is to help establish lasting peace in the region…

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  24. The article is very long.

    …According to congressional testimony, public statements and interviews, current and former government officials in the U.S., Europe, Israel and Canada claim that some leaders of the pro-Palestinian protest movement promote rhetoric from Hamas or the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, or PFLP. They also say some groups work with members of the PFLP. The State Department has designated both groups as terrorist organizations.

    On and after the Oct. 7 attacks, when about 1,200 people were killed and more than 240 were taken hostage, the PFLP’s military wing, the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades, claimed on Telegram that it had participated in the carnage. It urged other Palestinians to join it. Federal investigators in Washington, D.C., said they do not dispute the PFLP’s claim that it participated in the attack.

    Jonathan Schanzer, a former Treasury Department official, called for more aggressive investigation of ties between pro-Palestinian groups in the U.S. and terrorist organizations in testimony to Congress in November.

    “Individuals who previously worked for Hamas charities are now a driving force behind the large pro-Hamas demonstrations taking place in major cities across America,” said Schanzer, who is now senior vice president at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

    Schanzer cited Hatem Bazian, a longtime lecturer at the University of California Berkeley, as an example. Bazian founded the national branch of Students for Justice in Palestine to focus on campus-based activism, and he later launched American Muslims for Palestine. Both groups advocate for the U.S. government to end its support of Israel.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  25. @15 Projection, Appalled. I haven’t called for Cheney’s prosecution. The Darth Cheney lunatics have mostly all graduated to being Orange Man Bad lunatics. The only difference is that folks like you jumped aboard.

    lloyd (682e05)

  26. Trump trial transcripts are being prepared. They can be found here, for free: (after a day or two)

    https://ww2.nycourts.gov/press/index.shtml

    https://pdfs.nycourts.gov/PeopleVs.DTrump-71543/transcripts

    Click on Next at the top of the page to read them page by page:

    https://pdfs.nycourts.gov/PeopleVs.DTrump-71543/transcripts/4-22-2024/

    https://pdfs.nycourts.gov/PeopleVs.DTrump-71543/transcripts/4-23-2024/

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  27. David Pecker testified that Michael Cohen asked him to intercede with Trump to be reimbursed. Good questions for him would be:

    1. What arguments did Mr. Cohen say you should use with Trump?

    2. Name all you can recollect.

    3. Did he include the argument that Trump had promised to give him the money?

    (Thisis the core of the prosecution’s case.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  28. If Trump had reimbursed the National Enquirer the way Michael Cohen and Allen Weisselberg was telling him to, that most likely would also have involved falsifying business records.

    But the National Enquirer decided to eat the cash. So he’s only charged with falsifying business records to disguise that he was reimbursing Michael Cohen.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  29. David Pecker testified that Michael Cohen was deeply worried that Stormy Daniels would go public. Desperate enough to pay her with his own money?

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  30. #26

    So you are just an “any argument at hand” type. Noted.

    And I don’t think “orange” quite describes Trump these days. He’s gone kind of blotchy brown on his makeup. Maybe we can just move from “Orangeman” to “Sleepyman”

    Appalled (3d7942)

  31. The National Enquirer’s recent ownership history. (they can’t manage to sell it)

    https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/25/business/media/the-national-enquirer-trump.html

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  32. Donald Trump blamed the National Enquirer for the leak about Karen McDougal to the Wall Street Journal

    Here’s what happened:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/03/magazine/national-enquirer-trump-lachlan-cartwright.html

    Late in the afternoon on the Friday before the 2016 election, I received a call from Lukas Alpert, a Wall Street Journal reporter. He and I used to work together at The New York Post, and we kept in touch. He was on the media desk now but explained that he had been asked by a colleague on the investigative team for help on a story. Did I know anything about a woman named Karen McDougal?

    I froze. I was in the newsroom and only feet from Howard. I told Alpert I would call him back. I walked to the elevator and rode it down to the entrance of the building. I explained the huge risk I was taking by helping him and the consequences if Pecker or Howard found out. I thought if I used an old-school tabloid term it would give me some cover; only the guys who had been there forever used that term.

    “This was a catch-and-kill,” I told Alpert.

    “What’s a catch-and-kill?” he asked.

    I went on to explain the tabloid practice of buying stories to bury them. Alpert already had the outline of the story, I learned, and I filled him in on more: how Howard had flown out to Los Angeles that summer to buy McDougal’s story for $150,000, with the direction from Pecker to kill it to protect Trump. I stressed to him the importance of the term “catch and kill” and told him that if The Journal included it, it would give me some breathing room.

    I went back to my office and closed the door. My heart was racing, and I was sweating. A short time later, Howard burst in.

    “The Wall Street Journal has a story coming,” I recall him saying, before naming two former employees, blaming them for the leak. He slammed the door shut. The story went live after 9 that night. “National Enquirer Shielded Donald Trump From Playboy Model’s Affair Allegation.” And there it was in the third paragraph. “Quashing stories that way is known in the tabloid world as ‘catch and kill.’” I didn’t hear from Howard that weekend. No one thought Trump was going to win at that point, and the story was swallowed up in the pre-election frenzy.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  33. On cross examination Trump’s lawyers got Pecker to acknowledge that he’d been protecting Trump for years, (before the 2016 election) and that it was sometimes a practice of the National Enquirer to protect some celebrities in exchange for help on other stories or something like that,

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  34. The United States and 17 other countries demanded Hamas release all the hostages it holds in Gaza

    And commit suicide?

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  35. Apparently, Liz Cheney feels denying Trump’s immunity claim would still keep her and her dad safe from prosecution for war crimes, a fraudulent pretext for war, and enhanced interrogation techniques.

    I don’t know Liz’s feelings, and I doubt you do either, but her point was about non-official acts, of which Trump admitted his post-election efforts were.
    I’ll also note that this litany about her dad’s alleged crimes comes straight from the left-wing playbook, circa 2004. Funny that.
    Nevertheless, agree or disagree with VP Cheney, those were official acts under the GW Bush Office of the President.

    Paul Montagu (1e8339)

  36. Paul Montagu (1e8339) — 4/26/2024 @ 2:50 pm

    Yes. It’s an apples and watermelons comparison. People need to learn to make distinctions.

    Trump’s legal troubles are unprecedented precisely because Trump’s actions are unprecedented.

    Tribalism clouds judgment.

    norcal (249ec8)

  37. Many Americans don’t realize that the great majority of the military aid Congress approves for Ukraine stays right here in America — replenishing U.S. weapons stockpiles, strengthening our defense industrial base and creating good manufacturing jobs for American workers.

    I can barely tolerate the argument that without U.S. aid Ukraine will collapse and be subsumed by Russia (this was the debate earlier in the week), but I have zero tolerance for the nonsense of “Aid to Ukraine is creating good American manufacturing jobs!” That is Biden-level horsepucky, claiming that our broke government and it’s $2 trillion deficit this year can just conjure up another $20 or $30 billion (or however much of it goes to weaponry) out of thin air and watch it work wonders for our economy.

    I am not accusing anyone here of this, but the stupidest among our fellow Americans would say, “Hey, that’s a win/win: Ukraine gets its weapons and we get more manufacturing jobs.” I trust that readers of Patterico’s Pontifications realize that this is exactly the mindless economics behind Build Back Better and the rest of the Biden spending orgy of the past three years.

    JVW (b02843)

  38. @36 The distinction between private and public acts is what exactly? Cheney has offered no rationale, and neither have you. I don’t favor prosecuting the Cheneys nor Trump. Those seeking to prosecute one and shield the other need to provide a rationale, and until then the charge of hypocrisy is going to stick.

    lloyd (b717a8)

  39. Item 6 Why? Democrats turn poor black men (and not so poor) into middle class republicans. Republicans (conservatives like you not populists like trump) turn black men into black militants.

    asset (ece478)

  40. Lloyd:

    Same with people here who argue that voting for Trump means you somehow approve of everything he’s ever done, but voting for Biden doesn’t equal the same.

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  41. Asset really, REALLY needs to switch over to a better supplier of moonshine.

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  42. Partial transcript from Michael Cohen’s testimony:

    Prosecutor: Mr. Cohen, you — you are contradicting a sworn statement you’ve previously made to me and signed. I ask you again, sir, here and now under oath: Were you at any time a member of the Trump Organization headed by Donald Trump?

    Cohen: I don’t know nothin’ about that. Oh! I was in the apartment business with his father, but that was a long time ago. That’s all.

    Judge: We have a sworn affidavit — we have it — your sworn affidavit that you paid hush money on the orders of Donald Trump. Do you deny that confession, and do you realize what will happen as a result of your denial?

    Cohen: Look, the FBI guys, they promised me a deal. So, so I made up a lot of stuff about Donald Trump ’cause that’s what they wanted.

    But — But it was all lies. Uh…everything!

    … They kept saying Donald Trump did this and Donald Trump did that. So, I said, “Yeah, sure.” Why not?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  43. More slippery than fried grease, that Cohen guy.

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  44. @43

    Partial transcript from Michael Cohen’s testimony:

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/26/2024 @ 3:51 pm

    Are you joking around?

    Or, is this real?

    whembly (86df54)

  45. Biden Administration Shelves Plan to Ban Menthol Cigarettes

    The Biden administration is reversing course on its plan to ban menthol cigarettes, after the White House weighed the potential public-health benefits of banning minty smokes against the political risk of angering some Black voters in an election year.

    The administration said Friday that it is delaying a decision on whether to impose a ban, contending that it needs more time to consult with outside groups on the matter. There is no timeline for the administration to revisit the decision, as President Biden competes with former President Donald Trump for votes in November.

    Menthols account for more than a third of all cigarettes sold in the U.S. each year and are predominantly used by Black and Hispanic smokers. Some 81% of Black smokers used menthols in 2020, compared with 30% of white smokers and 51% of Hispanic smokers, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

    Racist.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  46. Are you joking around?

    It’s a paraphrase from Frank Pentangeli’s testimony in Godfather, Part II.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  47. One of the greatest movies ever made.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  48. X/Twitter is absolutely aglow with the story of Kristi Noem shooting/killing a dog and a goat, included in her new book.

    How many people/celebrities embraced by conservatives have gone batsh!t insane lately now? 10? 20?

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  49. @36 The distinction between private and public acts is what exactly? Cheney has offered no rationale, and neither have you.

    That’s kind of the point of the case, which even Sauer acknowledged, and which you’re in denial about. Trump’s BS claims notwithstanding, he gets no immunity for non-officials acts.
    The other point is what kinds of official acts are not covered by immunity, given the queries by the Justices.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  50. JVW (b02843) — 4/26/2024 @ 3:18 pm

    It’s a matter of preference, JVW.
    I’d rather Ukraine get military aid, which is being tracked by an oversight group, instead of cash, which is fungible and more prone to corruption and diversion.
    Two, we’re giving the Ukrainians our surplus and older and more obsolete weaponry, and we’re backfilling it (and then some) with newer, more modern materiel. That’s a benefit to our inventory and defense.
    Three, I’d rather our funds stay here and go to our MIC than be sent offshore, hence the preference part. I’m really not seeing the downside, particularly since we’re only using a fraction of our military spending to degrade Putin’s military, without risking the life of a single American soldier.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  51. So when do we start the mass deportations and kicking out Biden’s invasion?

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  52. Good news. One of the leaders of the Columbia Quad Squatters, the guy who said “Zionists deserve to die”, was kicked out of the university. More expulsions necessary.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  53. Paul Montagu (d52d7d) — 4/26/2024 @ 7:41 pm

    Yeah, thanks Paul Montagu, but do you want to address the main thrust of my comment which is that we are plunging further into unsustainable debt and then pretending that it is somehow helping our economy?

    JVW (b02843)

  54. Yeah, thanks Paul Montagu, but do you want to address the main thrust of my comment which is that we are plunging further into unsustainable debt and then pretending that it is somehow helping our economy?

    I think the benefits from this expenditure exceed the cost of taking on the debt from same. In other words, it’s a good investment, IMO, because it also goes to our standing with our allies and the message we send to our foes and enemies, that our word means something.

    Additionally, if there’s a better way to decimate the military of a hostile foreign power with just 5% of our defense budget and no loss of American life, I’d like to know what that way is. How can we turn that down? What’s the downside?

    Two, I haven’t talked about how the bill helps our economy, because I don’t know the effect of it, but I have mentioned that it adds American jobs, which is simply true.

    Three, we’ve had a major structural imbalance between our revenues and spending since the aftermath of 9/11. The way I see it, the only way we can correct this imbalance is with taxing more of the rich, maybe re-implement the sequester to control discretionary spending, and reforming entitlements, all of which cannot be addressed in this present political environment.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  55. Catoggio well addresses our lack of focus on the American hostages that Hamas is holding. I can’t pick a blockquote because the entirety is worth the read. Bottom line, neither Biden nor Trump are focusing on the fact that militant Islamist terrorists are holding American citizens hostage, but it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t point this out or spotlight this situation. American citizenship is a gold standard.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  56. Three, we’ve had a major structural imbalance between our revenues and spending since the aftermath of 9/11. The way I see it, the only way we can correct this imbalance is with taxing more of the rich, maybe re-implement the sequester to control discretionary spending, and reforming entitlements, all of which cannot be addressed in this present political environment.

    Or maybe we can not let every single person who wants to come in to the country come in, and stop trying to build infrastructure to accommodate them. These things are all connected. Think of how housing and traffic would be far less of a problem if 5 or 10 million illegals were deported, especially in LA.

    We have a spending problem, not a taxing problem. The whole “lets throw $50 billion at the problem” thinking is what is killing us. Maybe we don’t need a bullet train between Bakersfield and Merced, or student loan bailouts, or farm subsidies, or the CHIPs Act. Maybe Europe could actually pick up some more of the Ukraine thing — it’s their ox being gored.

    BUt who do we have on offer:

    1) Mr Same’ol kick-the-can-down-the-road who’ll be dead before the fan’s sh1t gets to his neighborhood.

    2) Mr Kick-over-the-table and it’s-all-about-me wannabe Caesar.

    Our problems are not inside the lines any more. Sequester!?!?! How droll.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  57. Gov. kristi noem shoots 14 month old puppy. To look tough so trump will pick her for veep? (DU)

    asset (8b4c5e)

  58. @52 as tonto said to the lone ranger what you mean “WE”.

    asset (8b4c5e)

  59. Kevin, only 30% of our spending is discretionary, and half of that is defense spending. The other 70% is interest and entitlements. Something has to give, so we can’t just look at one side, the spending side, of the ledger if we want to make any serious dent to our annual deficits, especially when we’re paying out (or soon paying out) more than we’re bringing in on Medicare and Social Security.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  60. Any analysis of our deficit and debt without a structural analysis of the budget is pretty useless. We can cherry-pick any spending item and say it’s the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

    Paul is correct that entitlements, defense, and debt service dominate the story. An aging population exacerbates the entitlement trajectory.
    We want more young workers just not in an uncontrolled manner across the southern border. Can we fix that?

    The problem is that few voters meaningfully “feel” the effects of escalating deficits and debt. It’s not like increasing debt triggers automatic tax hikes, benefit cuts, or spending caps…as it probably should. We can only imagine our political opponents paying for our collective inaction. There’s no magical tax and welfare cut that solves everything.

    This has to be shared sacrifice. Which means responsible Republicans and Democrats must actually sit down and not play politics and carve out compromises. This is why it’s awful to nominate irresponsible candidates who have zero interest in doing what’s right for the coming generations.

    We do have to restructure social security and medicare to slow the growth of their outlays. We have to make tough calls on military spending. But I’m not sure that means we abdicate our role in international crises….or completely abandon fiscal stimulus during downturns.

    I also agree with Paul that Ukraine spending is not just about sending a message to Putin about the resolve of the West, it’s also an important message to Xi. How much do we save by delaying an invasion of Taiwan? How much do we save by keeping a buffer between Russia and Poland and Romania? If Russia consolidates control in Ukraine, will NATO have greater long-term costs than if Russia is held in check?

    If nationalists want to focus on debt, I welcome them to the table. But I want to see their comprehensive plan. If they want no discussion of entitlement reform, then they’re unserious. If the tax system isn’t reformed to yield more revenue, then the plan doesn’t sound viable. If we get more debt ceiling melodrama, then we’re not being honest.

    AJ_Liberty (e3c112)

  61. If you are interested in deficits, let me suggest you study this graph: https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/FYFSGDA188S

    But that’s because I think deficits (or surpluses) as a percent of GDP is the most useful single measure. (I assume everyone — well, almost everyone — knows that the national debt can decline as a percentage of the GDP, even while we run consistent deficits — if the deficits are small relative to the growth in the economy,)

    Jim Miller (321e3d)

  62. I also agree with Paul that Ukraine spending is not just about sending a message to Putin about the resolve of the West, it’s also an important message to Xi.

    What message is sent by an administration that constantly requests insufficient funds for the national defense budget?

    From the Defense Department Fiscal Year 2025 Budget Request transcript:

    1:29:03
    Dan Sullivan, R-AK

    THANK YOU, MR.. I APPRECIATE THE DISCUSSION ON THE SUPPLEMENTAL AND I WOULD ENCOURAGE YOU TO CONTINUE TO TALK ABOUT IT NOT AS A UKRAINE AID PACKAGE BUT AS A PACKAGE THAT ACTUALLY BUILDS OUR OWN INDUSTRIAL BASE TO PROTECT OUR OWN COUNTRY. THAT IS WHAT IT IS. IT IS ACTUALLY CLOSER TO 60% GOES DIRECTLY INTO THE. WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE DOLLARS, IT ACTUALLY UNLOCKS ABOUT $6 BILLION TO BUILD THE WEB SYSTEM THAT SHE’S IN PAIN IS ABOUT. I WOULD ENCOURAGE YOU TO TALK ABOUT IT IN NOT REGARD AND THE AMOUNT THAT IT FOCUSES ON ISRAEL IN TAIWAN. THAT IS IMPORTANT THIS WEEK WITH THE HOUSE. I WANT TO GET TO THE DEFENSE BUDGET WHICH IS WHAT YOU ARE TESTIFYING. WOULD YOU BOTH AGREE, MR. CHAIRMAN AND MR. SECRETARY, THAT WE ARE FACING ONE OF THE MOST DANGEROUS TIMES IN OUR HISTORY SINCE WORLD WAR TWO?

    01:30:19

    [Austin]
    THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST COMPLEX TIMES THAT I HAVE SEEN.

    01:30:27
    [Sullivan]
    GENERAL?

    01:30:28
    [Brown]
    IN THE 39 YEARS, THIS IS PROBABLY BEEN THE MOST COMPLEX I’VE SEEN.

    01:30:33
    Dan Sullivan, R-AK

    I KNOW THESE ARE HARD QUESTIONS BUT I’M GOING TO ASK THEM. THE PRESIDENT HAS INFLATION- ADJUSTED CUTS TO THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE EVERY YEAR. THE CHAIRMAN MENTIONED WHILE THIS WAS THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF LEADERSHIP WHO IS FAILING. EVERY YEAR, HE PUTS FORWARD DEFENSE DEPARTMENT CUTS DURING ONE OF THE MOST DANGEROUS. ALL. RIGHT NOW THE DIRECTION THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION IS PUSHING WILL GET US BELOW 3% FOR OUR DEFENSE. WE HAVE ONLY DONE THAT FOUR TIMES SINCE WORLD WAR TWO. DO YOU THINK BEING AT 3% OR BELOW 3% OF GDP FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE MEETS THE MOMENT IN TERMS OF THE DANGERS WE ARE SEEING RIGHT NOW? MR. SECRETARY?

    01:31:22
    [Austin]
    I THINK, AGAIN, OPERATING WITHIN THE GUIDELINES OF THE LAW —

    01:31:27
    [Sullivan]
    I AM NOT ASKING ABOUT. IF I AM SAYING IF WE GO TO 3% OR BELOW, WE HAVE BEEN THERE FOUR TIMES, IT WAS MOSTLY IN THE LATE 90s WHEN WE HAD. IS 3% OF GDP FOR OUR DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE WHAT WE NEED DURING THESE DANGEROUS TIMES?

    01:31:48
    [Austin]
    WE LINKED OUR REQUEST TO OUR STRATEGY AND AGAIN, I THINK WE HAD TO MAKE SOME TOUGH CHOICES, AS I SAID EARLIER.

    01:31:57
    [Sullivan]
    I AM SORRY TO INTERRUPT YOU. IN YOUR PERSONAL OPINION, DO YOU THINK THAT BELOW 3% OF GDP SPENDING IS WHAT WE NEED TO MEET THESE DANGEROUS TIMES? WHICH WE ALL AGREE ARE DANGEROUS TIMES? WHAT I REALLY BELIEVE ON THIS IS WE’VE GOT TO GET A BUDGET ON TOP. FOR THE PAST 50 YEARS, WE’VE HAD.

    01:32:21
    . CAN YOU ANSWER MY QUESTION? IT IS A PRETTY EASY ANSWER. THE ANSWER IS NO, RIGHT? MR. CHAIRMAN, I WOULD LIKE TO SUBMIT THIS CHART FOR THE RECORD. IT SHOWS FOUR TIMES SINCE WORLD WAR II, WE HAVE BEEN AT 3% OR NO. THE ANSWER IS NO. I THINK WE ALL KNOW THAT. THIS COMMITTEE KNOWS THAT. IT IS IMPORTANT. I RESPECT BOTH OF YOU VERY MUCH. IT IS IMPORTANT TO COME BEFORE THIS COMMITTEE AND TELL US WHAT YOU BELIEVE. NONE OF YOU BELIEVE GOING BELOW 3% IS GOOD. I KNOW IT IS HARD. THE PRESIDENT REALLY THINKS IT IS A GOOD FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE. HE CUT THE BUDGET EVERY YEAR.

    https://www.c-span.org/video/?534654-1/defense-department-fiscal-year-2025-budget-request&live=&vod=

    Pathetic.

    I don’t think this represents the intimidating posture that single after-the-fact supplemental bills supposedly achieve.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  63. Two, I haven’t talked about how the bill helps our economy, because I don’t know the effect of it, but I have mentioned that it adds American jobs, which is simply true.

    I wish I could remember who said this first, but government spending doesn’t create jobs, it just moves them from one sector of the economy to another.

    I will accept the argument that it’s worth going further into debt because it sends an appropriate message to our global rivals, but when the word “investment” is tossed around I can’t help but think of Clinton, Obama, Biden, Schumer, Pelosi and all of the other Democrats who so recklessly try to pass off their wasteful spending as “investments.”

    JVW (b02843)

  64. I would still maintain, though, what I commented on the previous post: if Ukraine support really is vital to our interests then each American should be asked to pay $300 on its behalf. I’ve probably come close to donating that much through various diocesan funds pegged towards humanitarian relief in Ukraine, but at least that was voluntary and not compelled by Uncle Sam.

    JVW (b02843)

  65. This strikes me as a major surprise:

    Russian president Vladimir Putin likely did not order dissident Alexei Navalny’s untimely death in an Arctic penal colony earlier this year, U.S. intelligence agencies have determined.

    Several U.S. intelligence agencies found that Putin did not order Navalny’s death at the moment he was killed, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Putin’s ultimate culpability for Navalny’s death is not being disputed by the intelligence assessment.

    European intelligence officials have been briefed on the American assessment and some remain skeptical, security officials from several European capitals told the Journal. Navalny’s allies expressed similar skepticism of the notion that Putin did not orchestrate Navalny’s death.

    “The idea of Putin being not informed and not approving killing Navalny is ridiculous,” said Navalny ally Leonid Volkov.

    Navalny’s widow believes that he was likely poisoned. If that is indeed the case, and if it did not come on the order of Vladimir Putin, is Putin now angry at whomever took the initiative on his or her own? Or could it be that Navalny died of “natural” causes, the effects of his unconscionable incarceration over the past three years and past maltreatment including his 2020 poisoning?

    Or are our intelligence agencies no better than they were 20 years ago when they were screwing up their analysis of the Middle East?

    JVW (b02843)

  66. Or could it be that Navalny died of “natural” causes, the effects of his unconscionable incarceration over the past three years and past maltreatment including his 2020 poisoning?

    Yes, which is a pretty reasonable way for Putin to intend and be responsible for Navalny’s death, right?

    The distinction drawn here is not really even important.

    Dustin (66b824)

  67. Putting the “I” in Integrity:

    Former OAN host turned Trump 2020 election lawyer, Christina Bobb, was indicted in Arizona on Wednesday over her role in trying to subvert the outcome of the 2020 presidential election in the state with the so-called “fake electors” scheme.
    ……………
    Last month, a week after Trump managed to install his daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, as co-chair of the Republican National Committee, Bobb was hired by the RNC to lead the party’s “election integrity” unit.
    …………..
    …………..Charlie Dent, a former Republican congressman from Pennsylvania, blasted the RNC hiring Bobb as a “further indication of how the RNC has not only become an arm of the Trump campaign, but an outlet for the most extreme elements of the election denial movement.”
    ……………

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  68. What message is sent by an administration that constantly requests insufficient funds for the national defense budget?

    I don’t approve of Biden’s feeble approach to our national defense, or his feebleness in general, but a little perspective here. We spend more on our national defense than the next nine largest-spending countries combined.

    I wish I could remember who said this first, but government spending doesn’t create jobs, it just moves them from one sector of the economy to another.

    I think it depends on the government spending, JVW. More specifically, and going by Keynes, deficit spending has a stimulative effective on an economy but, as we’ve seen from the massive spending after the pandemic, it can be inflationary.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  69. I think it depends on the government spending, JVW. More specifically, and going by Keynes, deficit spending has a stimulative effective on an economy but, as we’ve seen from the massive spending after the pandemic, it can be inflationary.

    And that inflationary spending, whether because of the so-called stimulus or from the cumulative effects of years and years of deficits, has the effect of preventing job creation in the private-sector. So I think the point is valid: the government doesn’t create jobs, it just reassigns them.

    JVW (b02843)

  70. Putin almost certainly did not order the cutting off of the ears and the asphyxiation torture of the theater terrorist suspects, either.

    That is not how a security state functions, comrades.

    It is expected of the security organs that they “should not be too rigidly bound by legalisms”.

    When Navalny was taken into custody, it was understood by everyone that it would be an “indeterminate” sentence absent an intervening act of clemency.

    nk (f09cc3)

  71. We spend more on our national defense than the next nine largest-spending countries combined.

    Irrelevant.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  72. The very first thing we need is a spending limitation amendment. Failing a 2/3rd vote of each House, limit non-debt-service spending to 20% of the previous 4 years average GDP.

    Balanced budget amendments don’t work. California has one and has ALWAYS found a way to spend in deficit by lying about expected income or playing games with accounting on outlays. You have to limit the spending, THEN we can talk about tax increases.

    But the whole “we’ll hold down spending, but we really need to raise taxes” game has been played so many times it’s Lucy & the Football. And we always end up on our backs like Charlie Brown.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  73. Social Security and Medicare are supposed to have sequestered funding mechanisms. This has not been honored in several ways, notably the lack of market rate interest paid to the trust funds over the years.

    Politician’s largess during the initial decades of SS, where the pre-Boomer generations got back much more than they ever put in, led to the 1980’s “reform” that doubled FICA taxes, lowered benefits and delayed eligibility. Boomers will probably get back what they paid, with interest, on average. High-income Boomers will not.

    Social security though is solvable with a small tax increase, another year’s delay, and adjustment of the COLA bumps.

    Medicare is a mess and the answers are not simple. A large part of the problem is the rising cost of new drugs. There is probably some limitation that needs to be made here, but Biden’s approach is to limit co-pays and premiums while forcing coverage of all these new drugs. Which cannot work.

    The result with Medicare is going to be Medicare Advantage for most, and significantly higher co-pays and premiums for Original Medicare (and similarly for the Supplements which cover those co-pays). And an increase in the FICA rate.

    It would also help A LOT if the two trust funds could put their money into the A+ bond market under control of the Fed or other independent agency.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  74. Nothing can be done about the debt, although I see that Trump wants to control rates, which would work until the wheels came off.

    If Social Security and Medicare can be returned to sequestered status, the debt is given first call, and a spending limitation is place, then it becomes a matter of budgeting the available money.

    Then we can talk about raising taxes to meet the now fixed expenses.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  75. I am not a radical, and I do not generally favor radical solutions. But the times now (or shortly will) demand major changes in what we do.

    Joe Biden has no interest in the future. His horizon is 2026.

    Donald Trump has no interest in the future and not much interest in the present unless it affects him directly. He wants to get revenge for the past.

    These are our choices. God help the United States of America. The president that follows is going to have the Labors of Hercules to attend to.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  76. What really truly scares me is that we may actually need a Caesar in the near future. The Center is not holding.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  77. What message is sent by an administration that constantly requests insufficient funds for the national defense budget?

    The world isn’t static; emergent requirements and situations happen. For example, the need to support Israel after the October 7th attacks wasn’t foreseen by anyone at the time (least of all Israel), and certainly not when current federal budget was being developed. Every administration has submitted supplemental budget proposals.

    What was embarrassing was the dysfunction in Congress that delayed the supplemental funding to Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan when everyone knew it would pass in the end. But I’ll bet we’ll see Congress hop to it to provide supplemental funding for tornado damage in the Midwest.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  78. We want more young workers just not in an uncontrolled manner across the southern border. Can we fix that?

    Well, we can. We have to fix our immigration process almost entirely to get there though. Currently, the last group of people we let in are workers, and that is by intention — labor unions controlled the last reform.

    1) We have to normalize all who have come in illegally. My preference would be permanent residence with a bar on citizenship (there has to be a cost). Get them into the system, paying FICA and income taxes and some of our problems are lessened.

    2) Restructure who we admit to favor young skilled workers and tradesmen. This might not be so very popular with MAGA, but it’s really who we want to let it.

    3) Allow bringing in children and spouses, but not others unless they also qualify as workers. We do not need to be importing extra dependents.

    4) Require that all taxes be paid, perhaps on a payment schedule, for those owed but not paid due to illegal employment.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  79. Balanced budget amendments don’t work. California has one……..

    Every state except Vermont has some sort of balanced budget requirement.

    For example, although Arizona requires the governor to propose a balanced budget, it does not require the legislature to pass one. By comparison, Texas and West Virginia require the legislature to pass a balanced budget, but they do not require the governor’s initial proposal to be balanced. In California, the governor must propose, the legislature must pass, and the governor must ultimately sign a balanced budget.

    In 2021, 45 states required the governor to submit a balanced budget to the legislature; 44 states required the legislature to pass a balanced budget; 41 states required the governor to ultimately sign a balanced budget; and 35 states required the budget to be balanced at year-end (that is, the state cannot “carry over” a deficit). Overall, 29 states and the District of Columbia imposed all four requirements on their budget process. Still, BBRs typically only apply to states’ operating budgets, meaning that capital and pension funds are usually exempt from these limitations.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  80. The world isn’t static

    Derp.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  81. In California, the governor must propose, the legislature must pass, and the governor must ultimately sign a balanced budget.

    And yet it’s often pure fiction.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  82. “I wish I could remember who said this first, but government spending doesn’t create jobs, it just moves them from one sector of the economy to another.”

    I think the idea is that during recessions, the other sectors aren’t hiring…so infrastructure and defense spending fills in the gaps. It’s a fair point to note that growing these sectors through economic booms as well will starve talent from other productive ventures. Military spending is tricky because if you cut it too much, then you spend too much trying to replace lost specialized talent (think building submarines) when you have to ramp it back up. Infrastructure is also something no one wants to pay for until a bridge collapses or a levee breaks. I would imagine the national highway system employed a lot of construction people though the 50’s. Was it economically inefficient? Would we have a highway system if it was left to the private sector?

    “if Ukraine support really is vital to our interests then each American should be asked to pay $300 on its behalf”

    Liberals would say the same about a border wall. The question becomes do we have bake sales and sell bonds for Taiwan as well? How about Israel? Maybe the answer is “yes”, but we’ve gotten away from fiscal responsibility because it doesn’t affect the average voter. The Left wants the super-rich to pay for our largesse and the Right thinks economic growth is the only answer….even in a global economy where it’s no longer possible for us to make everything for a profit.

    I still think step 1 is that we have to cool-down our political system. Literally nothing of consequence is possible today, with even popular actions are exploited by radicals on both sides. Hyper-partisanship enabled by for-profit media makes us questionably governable. Trump is the GOP nominee not because he has the skills, knowledge, and temperament to get the job done, but because he’s entertaining, bombastic, and a norm buster. I don’t really see great things replacing the norms under attack. The idea that we are all in this together and must find compromise is dying. It’s not that we shouldn’t fight about culture issues, but we really do need to put things in context and not make our politics so toxic that we can’t think about the next generation.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  83. The current state of California’s budget

    https://calmatters.org/commentary/2024/04/california-budget-deficit-questions-deadlines/

    Last week was the deadline for filing personal income tax returns, and income taxes are by far the most important source of state revenue. What’s collected this month will have a big effect on the size of the state budget deficit that Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislators must cover, at least on paper, by June 15.

    Before April, state revenues from all sources were running $5.6 billion below what Newsom had projected for the current fiscal year in his proposed 2024-25 budget, according to the governor’s budget staff.

    The shortfall indicated that the deficit Newsom pegged at $38 billion for the 2023-24 and 2024-25 fiscal years would be substantially greater. The Legislature’s budget analyst, Gabe Petek, declared that under Newsom’s budget the deficit was really $58 billion and that revenue shortfalls already experienced and projected to worsen would push the gap to $73 billion.

    The immense disparity between the Newsom administration’s budget picture and Petek’s analysis remains unresolved, but the net personal income tax collections tracked by the controller’s office so far in April appear to be hitting the $16.3 billion administration estimate for the month.

    Not on the table so far: Not expanding Medicaid to cover illegal immigrants.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  84. “I wish I could remember who said this first, but government spending doesn’t create jobs, it just moves them from one sector of the economy to another.”

    That’s simplistic. Project Apollo created many more jobs than it directly paid for. Medicare crated many more jobs as well, as the services it paid for would not have been provided otherwise.

    Some are probably just transfers, of course, and some are probably destructive — regulatory agency employees regulating as make-work.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  85. The idea that we are all in this together and must find compromise is dying. It’s not that we shouldn’t fight about culture issues, but we really do need to put things in context and not make our politics so toxic that we can’t think about the next generation.

    My one faint hope is that the GOP candidate in 2028 might be the one person who was saying that this time. Maybe we’ll be done with this othering by then.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  86. I’ve said this before about MEdicare, but I think it bears saying again:

    If you are young and think that Medicare is just wasting money on old people, consider it as medical experiments on prolonging life, and that you might benefit.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  87. Looking for an exit:

    ………….
    Embarking on a high-stakes GOP investigation into the president and his family in an election year with a divided, paper-thin majority was always going to be an uphill climb. (House Oversight Committee Chairman James) Comer and his fellow top Republicans leading the probe have consistently been caught between the far-right wing’s early demands for impeachment and skeptical Republicans in vulnerable districts, all amid Democrats’ relentless efforts to dismantle their work.

    But a series of missteps has left the probe stalled and without clear consensus on what a successful conclusion looks like, according to interviews with more than a dozen Republican lawmakers and sources.

    “To me, success is impeachment from the House,” GOP Rep. Brian Mast said.

    ……….. Comer has made sweeping claims that the president was involved in bribery and influence-peddling schemes that compromised his job.
    ………….
    Some in the House GOP, granted the anonymity to speak freely, said they felt he often overpromised and underdelivered, with one GOP source who worked on the investigation telling CNN that people wished Comer had “reined in” his rhetoric. Instead of quietly building a case, Comer was quick to make bold accusations on friendly right-wing cable news platforms, sources said, which frustrated some members.
    ………….
    The expert GOP witnesses testified (at the first hearing in September that) they supported the opening of the inquiry, but the takeaway became their acknowledgement that Republicans did not yet have the evidence to prove the accusations they were leveling.

    Afterwards, some Republicans complained that Comer should have collected more evidence and vetted the witnesses more closely before putting his investigation under the spotlight. One GOP source at the time called it an “unmitigated disaster.”
    ……………
    Witness after witness brought in for closed-door interviews in January and February built a pile of testimony that refuted core tenants of the inquiry. While their testimony sometimes put the president closer to his family’s business partners than previously known, including through surface-level interactions and phone calls, the chorus of firsthand accounts said Biden was not involved in his family’s business dealings, nor did he make policy decisions based on them.
    …………….
    In February, Republicans were dealt a massive blow when it was announced that the individual who brought forward the bribery allegations about the president and his son memorialized in an unverified FBI document – which Republicans had been warned not to bank on – was charged with lying about the Bidens.
    ………….
    Republicans charged ahead, insisting they had a closed-door deposition with Hunter Biden to prepare for, even though they had repeatedly put those unverified claims at the center of their case.

    But even without cameras, the president’s son failed to deliver the smoking gun Republicans were hoping for, leaving the inquiry at a standstill. ………
    ………..
    Now, Republicans leading the investigation are actively deliberating how to conclude the inquiry.
    ………….
    Comer has said he wants to send criminal referrals to the Department of Justice in the hopes that former President Donald Trump is elected and can capitalize on them.

    Meanwhile, Comer single-handedly invited the president to testify at a hearing. After the White House declined the invitation, he dropped his invitation for a hearing and instead focused on his request for documents and written answers.
    ……………

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  88. If you are young and think that Medicare is just wasting money on old people, consider it as medical experiments on prolonging life, and that you might benefit.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 12:26 pm

    LOL! Medicare conducts R&D on life extension? Who knew!

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  89. The line between official acts and personal acts, political acts and non political will always be muddy. The ink will not be dry before the legions of DC Lawyers will be poring over the ruling for creative loopholes. Its done all the time. we know that the lawyers at the DOJ figured out how to legally leak to the media even though the the law was supposed to prevent it- and that they laughed about how clever they were

    steveg (aa9e3d)

  90. if Ukraine support really is vital to our interests then each American should be asked to pay $300 on its behalf

    if _____________(fill in favorite program here) really is vital to our interests then each American should be asked to pay $__________on its behalf.

    FIFY.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  91. The National Park System is the perfect example of a program that not only doesn’t generate a significant economic impact, it demonstrably imposes economic costs by blocking resource development, such as mining, dams, and real estate projects.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  92. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 12:26 pm

    Now why didn’t the Democrats use that as a description for their death panels? Academic, since that’s the endgame benefit of the mrna path for “vaccines” in medicine.

    felipe (5e2a04)

  93. LOL! Medicare conducts R&D on life extension? Who knew!

    Whaddaya think all those tricky biologicals are? Expensive and risky now, and the one that work will be cheap later.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  94. mrna path for “vaccines” in medicine.

    Winners of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Medicine

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  95. If it were not for Medicare, not one dime would be spent on research into the diseases of old age.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  96. RIP actor/producer/director/newscaster Terry Carter (95):

    ………..
    …………(I)n wayfaring six-decade career, he was a merchant seaman, a jazz pianist, a law student, a television news anchor, a familiar character on network sitcoms, an Emmy-winning documentarian, a good will ambassador to China, a longtime expatriate in Europe — and a reported dead man; in 2015, rumors that he had been killed were mistaken. It was not him but a much younger Terry Carter who had died in a hit-and-run accident in Los Angeles by a pickup truck driven by the rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight.
    ………….
    …………(H)e was best known to viewers as Sgt. Joe Broadhurst, the sidekick to Deputy Marshal Sam McCloud (Dennis Weaver) on NBC’s “McCloud” series from 1970 to 1977, and in 21 episodes of “Battlestar Galactica,” as Colonel Tigh, second-in-command of the starship fleet in ABC’s original science-fiction series in 1978-79. ………
    ………..
    (He was also) the only regular Black cast member on “The Phil Silvers Show” (1955-59). He played Pvt. Sugie Sugarman in 92 half-hour episodes of the CBS comedy……….(and) in 1965 he was the only Black actor to portray a G.I. in any of the 152 episodes of the World War II series “Combat!,” which appeared on ABC from 1962 to 1967.
    …………

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  97. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 1:17 pm

    Alottagood the Nobel prize did for Ivermectin, eh? Billions of doses with an excellent safety profile; cheap(!), and blocked from use as a prophylactic(cheap!) at every turn with every proponent called a quack or worse. While unknown world-wide harm comes from the experimental “vaccines.”

    Now, a Nobel for medicine still means something. Alfred’s TNT made many projects possible with massive benefits to all mankind, but strap the stuff to yer vest and run into a crowd… Time will bear witness to the catastrophic current use of mrna tech – the way thalidomide used during pregnancy proved catastrophic; contrasted with its use for Hanson’s disease or certain cancers.

    My point is all about how mrna is used and for what it is used. Is money the overriding goal? When the trade-off is between more safety and more money, money seems to win.

    felipe (176cc9)

  98. If it were not for Medicare, not one dime would be spent on research into the diseases of old age.
    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 1:19 pm

    I’d say that government activity tends to make everything it subsidizes more expensive.

    felipe (176cc9)

  99. I’m sure that you and I are on the same side, Kevin. We both value knowledge. We both bristle at those who deride it.

    felipe (176cc9)

  100. Ivermectin … Billions of doses with an excellent safety profile; cheap(!), and blocked from use as a prophylactic(cheap!) at every turn with every proponent called a quack or worse. While unknown world-wide harm comes from the experimental “vaccines.”

    And rightly so. Doctors who prescribed it for Covid should have been imprisoned.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  101. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 2:16 pm

    You are wrong. First, that is the path of the Totalitarian. Second, it runs counter to the practice of medicine.

    felipe (176cc9)

  102. I’d say that government activity tends to make everything it subsidizes more expensive.

    It can, as with education. To a point, those subsidies have benefits. When NDSL started, it was for STEM and languages, where we needed to focus during the Cold War. Then the loans got extended to all subjects and we got ethnic studies and rampant inflation in education.

    Medicare? Hard to say. Before Medicare old people could not buy insurance — everyone has some kind of preexisting condition by the time they’re 65. So very little was spent on treating them or research into their problems. Available drugs were insulin and aspirin. Afterwards? Lots of things that turn out to be helpful to younger people as well (e.g. statins). Not to mention cancer treatments, heart disease intervention and vascular repair.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  103. Second, it runs counter to the practice of medicine.

    First, do no harm.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  104. If you are one of those people who call Covid immunization “death jabs” we are done talking about it.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  105. Here’s a solution to our country’s budget problem:

    Everybody gets a haircut at whatever percentage it will take to achieve balance over a reasonable period of time. (The only exception I would make is people who are barely making it on Social Security).

    If it’s 10%, so be it. And yes, that includes my federal pension. Will government agencies have to make tough budgeting choices?You’re damn right they will.

    norcal (a55a49)

  106. BuDuh (550a53) — 4/27/2024 @ 10:04 am

    It’s exactly relevant. The issue is about American defense spending.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  107. Everybody gets a haircut at whatever percentage it will take to achieve balance over a reasonable period of time. (The only exception I would make is people who are barely making it on Social Security).

    But it won’t be. It will all be tax hikes and the cuts will never happen. Why do I believe this? Because it is what has always happened. At best the rate of increase will be slowed.

    A constitutional amendment to limit spending is the first thing that has to happen. GOVERNMENT has to take the first hit.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  108. Not everything can be cut 10%. Medicare for example. It’s a price control, and price controls mostly result in unintended consequences. Do you really thing that government benefits will be cut 10%? They might cut salaries, but they’ll hide it in more benefits, or in failure to police benefit frauds like pension spiking.

    And you can cut defense by more than 10%, you can cut some things by 100%. Ten percent across the board is 1) fallacious and 2) simplistic. It mostly attempts to avoid thought.

    Cut what they can spend to a fixed number and give them knives.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  109. @70 debt is deflationary spending sometimes is inflationary. A good example is collage loan debt preventing young people from buying cars and homes and even getting married and having kids.

    asset (6f20fb)

  110. The issue is about American defense spending.

    Indeed. And my comment was about an internal problem and the general appearance of how this administration looks on the world stage by constantly requesting less in defense spending than what even congress thinks is the bare minimum.

    Your comment regarding what the total dollar amount equals compared to other countries is irrelevant. You included it as “a little perspective” on why Biden wants to tank the defense budget. I don’t see that. You may as well tell everyone how many miles the budget dollars would cover if it was in one dollar bills laid out end to end.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  111. @72 Please explain why irrelevant?

    asset (6f20fb)

  112. Doctors who prescribed [Ivermectin] for Covid should have been imprisoned.
    Given its safety profile, its billions of doses administered worldwide, plus its cheap, I disagree.
    Drugs are used off label all the time

    Ivermectin is known as an anti parasite drug, but it does not kill the parasite, the bodies immune system does. “The prevailing school of thought is that ivermectin actually interferes with the ability of microfilariae to evade the human immune system, resulting in the host’s own immune response being able to overcome the immature worms and so kill them” Here the thing. They aren’t 100% sure how Ivermectin does this but one possibility is that it does something to the immune system, not the worms.
    Why not try it to see if would act as an immune system booster against COVID?
    So it might fail, its safety profile says it does no harm, where’s the crime?

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3043740/

    steveg (aa9e3d)

  113. @76 President AOC will be up to the task with help from her VP Cory Bush.

    asset (6f20fb)

  114. @106 inflation can make the debt worthless. Example we owe 40 trillion and it costs 50 trillion two buy a newspaper.

    asset (6f20fb)

  115. Ivermectin … Billions of doses with an excellent safety profile; cheap(!), and blocked from use as a prophylactic(cheap!) at every turn with every proponent called a quack or worse. While unknown world-wide harm comes from the experimental “vaccines.”

    One, there isn’t a randomized clinical trial that has shown ivermectin to be an effective treatment for Covid (link). The one exception are some studies in India or Bangladesh because the test subjects were already impacted by worms and parasites, for which ivermectin is an effective treatment.

    Two, Covid vaccines, including mRNA, aren’t “experimental”. All three approved vaccines successfully went through randomized clinical trials involving tens of thousands of participants.

    Three, they’re vaccines, not “vaccines”, so stated by CDC and FDA. The studies in TX and OH well displayed their effectiveness between the vaxxed and un-vaxxed.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  116. It’s relevant because we’re not at war, BuDuh, just handling some hotspots in Syria and Iraq, and giving a leg up to a couple of countries who are in wars caused by their enemies.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  117. The one exception are some studies in India or Bangladesh because the test subjects were already impacted by worms and parasites, for which ivermectin is an effective treatment.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d) — 4/27/2024 @ 3:33 pm

    Yup. That’s my understanding as well. Ivermectin, by killing the worms and parasites, allowed those people to better fend off Covid. If worms and parasites are not present, then there is no benefit.

    norcal (a55a49)

  118. This article is intriguing: https://www.theepochtimes.com/health/how-ivermectin-trials-were-designed-to-fail-5616759

    It is a paywall.

    One of the biggest takeaways was the claim of the author that “Improper dosing was a major issue in the RCTs(Randomized Clinical Trials) that found ivermectin ineffective.”

    Too many links and studies in the article to try a cut and paste mess here. Hopefully those who are interested enough will read the whole link.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  119. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 3:18 pm

    The problem is that people are always in favor of cutting some other guy’s benefit.

    With a haircut for all, everybody has to take a bite of the sh!t sandwich.

    norcal (a55a49)

  120. But it is not relevant to my comment that you crafted that response.

    A: “Spending big bucks on Ukraine tells Putin and Xi we can take them on.”

    B: “Administrations making it clear to the world that they want to cut the defense spending below what is necessary, even though the top brass in the military testify that ‘this is one of the most complex times’ the world has been in since WWII, is stronger negative telegraph of our resolve than whatever positive indication of strength a supplemental payout may render.”

    A: “The defense budget is larger than a bread basket.”

    BuDuh (550a53)

  121. The only real way to substantially cut defense spending is to revisit the strategy it supports. Right now the strategy is to be involved in every part of the world. The US doesn’t need aircraft carriers or I intercontinental bombers if you don’t intend to fight a war far from the US mainland.

    Of course one needs to understand the consequences of retreat from a “world” strategy to a North America strategy. One of the reasons for the Korean War is that the US drew its postwar defensive line in Asia to to include Japan but not the Asian mainland.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  122. It’s good that a Low Credibility site like Epoch Times is behind a paywall. Something about fools and their money soon parted.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  123. Where does “NationalZero” rate, Paul?

    BuDuh (550a53)

  124. Are Gazans beginning to think more rationally? Perhaps:

    More than six months into the war in Gaza and with dimming hopes for a cease-fire deal, Palestinians there are growing more critical of Hamas, which some of them blame for the months-long conflict that has destroyed the territory — and their lives.
    . . .
    But while the majority of Palestinians in Gaza blame Israel for their suffering, according to polling conducted in March, they also appear to be turning their ire toward the militants. In interviews with more than a dozen residents of Gaza, people said they resent Hamas for the attacks in Israel and — war-weary and desperate to fulfill their basic needs — just want to see peace as soon as possible.

    About 100,000 Gazans, according to another source, have left the strip.

    (One of the lessons that still needs to be learned by much of the world is that terrorist attacks almost always make life worse for those who support the terrorists.)

    Jim Miller (e1cbe4)

  125. Where does “NationalZero” rate, Paul?

    Did I link to them regarding scientific claims? No. Have I linked them ever? I dunno, maybe, you tell me. You sound upset about it.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  126. Wow! You got pretty touchy over that question.

    I can see where you want to steer the conversation. It’s ok.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  127. Why not try it to see if would act as an immune system booster against COVID?

    They did. It didn’t. But the boosters refused to believe it. You cannot fight faith with facts.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  128. The studies in TX and OH well displayed their effectiveness between the vaxxed and un-vaxxed.

    As did the 10x death rate among the unvaxxed.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  129. The epoch times is a front for Falun Gong. A cult.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  130. Where does “NationalZero” rate, Paul?

    Vaccines are to harden the target, not to prevent all infection. Again.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  131. With a haircut for all, everybody has to take a bite of the sh!t sandwich.

    Not once in the history of government, has everyone take the same haircut. If the object is to cut spending than cut spending at the top line. Let them fight over the scraps.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  132. The only real way to substantially cut defense spending is to revisit the strategy it supports. Right now the strategy is to be involved in every part of the world. The US doesn’t need aircraft carriers or I intercontinental bombers if you don’t intend to fight a war far from the US mainland.

    I for one do not want to live in a world policed by China.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  133. My favorite take regarding Governor Noem’s shooting her dog and dumping the carcass in a gravel pit…

    The dog knew too much.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  134. Have a nice weekend, everyone.

    BuDuh (550a53)

  135. Wow! You got pretty touchy over that question.
    I can see where you want to steer the conversation. It’s ok.

    Said the guy with a record of trying to impugn the commenter instead of debating the issue.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  136. Paul Montagu (d52d7d) — 4/27/2024 @ 5:03 pm

    More dogpiling (pun intended) on Gov. Noem:

    ………..
    “Post a picture with your dog that doesn’t involve shooting them and throwing them in a gravel pit,” Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz wrote on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. Alongside it was a picture of Walz feeding his dog a treat.
    ………..
    “ACT NOW!” Rep. Jared Moskowitz (D-Fla.) wrote on X alongside an infomercial-style video in memoriam for Cricket. ”For just $.10 a day you can help us save a puppy from Kristi Noem.”
    ………..
    “She can’t be VP now,” (MAGA media personality and Trump ally Laura Loomer) tweeted. “You can’t shoot your dog and then be VP.”
    ………..
    “Dog owners know our furry friends can be a lot to keep up with. But when those tough moments come, you have options,” (The Lincoln Project)video said. “Shooting your dog in the face should not be one of them. And if you do happen to shoot your dog in the face, please, don’t write about it in your autobiography.”

    Florida governor and former Trump rival for the Republican presidential nomination Ron DeSantis pitched in with a call to action — and a dig at the southern border crisis.
    ………….

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  137. My favorite take regarding Governor Noem’s shooting her dog and dumping the carcass in a gravel pit…

    The dog knew too much.

    No, the shanty-trash just made up the stories.

    Every farmer knows that billy goats smell very bad and are very aggressive. They are kept only for breeding purposes, confined and/or tethered and away from dwellings, and definitely not as pets for children.

    Likewise with the dog. Only somebody who knows absolutely nothing about hunting with a dog would take an untrained dog out on a shoot in the first place, and definitely not without a stout leash anywhere near chickens.

    nk (b86a34)

  138. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 2:31 pm

    What a nonsensical thing to say to me. You know that I have never held such a position or used such language. If you didn’t, then you have not paid sufficient attention to my comments. But I do not comment as often as many others here, so you may have someone else in mind.

    felipe (176cc9)

  139. Rip Murdock (79ebbf) — 4/27/2024 @ 5:59 pm

    More reactions:

    ………
    Perplexed at why she shared the story, independent journalist Tim Pool asked, “did she just intentionally end her career?”
    ………..
    Conservative influencer duo The Hodge Twins remarked, “Telling everybody you shot your young dog and promoting your book at the same time? wtf, this is wild.”
    ……….
    Popular pro-Trump account “Catturd” seemed to take the story personally, posting, “Omg – now my blood is boiling. Remember, I’m a country boy who lives on a ranch . There’s a huge difference between putting an old horse down who is suffering, than shooting a 18 month dog for being untrainable. But then to plug your book at the end.”

    “Seriously, is it just me? [I’m[sic] have no words,” he added.
    …………
    “Florida’s Voice News” CEO Brendon Leslie let Noem have it, writing, “Kristi Noem should be criminally charged for animal abuse – this is vile and disgusting. It’s one thing to put a dog down that is sick – it’s totally unacceptable to put a puppy down because it wasn’t a good hunting dog. Put it up for adoption!”
    …………
    Independent reporter “Publius” made a pun out of the anecdote, posting, “@KristiNoem just SHOT her political career in the head at point blank range. Absolute Psycho. And of course Trump is considering her for VP!”
    ………….

    The political commercials (and the obligatory SNL skit) will just write themselves. The story reminds me of this magazine cover.

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  140. @141 “@KristiNoem just SHOT her political career in the head at point blank range. Absolute Psycho.”

    Little did she know how her political career would skyrocket if she simply ate the dog.

    And, remember the SNL skit about an SNL star who shot and killed a human?

    All this disingenuous outrage is a skit that writes itself.

    lloyd (5852e0)

  141. Frat boys can be useful. Well done, ASU.

    I was watching Smerconish this AM and he made a good distinction about the campus protesters, that there’s nothing wrong with students expressing their 1st Amendment rights, but the encampments and tents are trespassing, have business being there, and should be removed forthwith.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  142. Tiki Man Torched:

    ………..
    Tyler Bradley Dykes, a former U.S. Marine of South Carolina, pleaded guilty to two felony charges in connection to his criminal conduct at the Capitol on Jan. 6, according to his plea agreement. He faces up to eight years in prison and he will be sentenced in July. After the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, Dykes, 26, was charged and pleaded guilty to a single felony count of burning an object with intent to intimidate.
    …………..
    Dykes came with two friends from South Carolina to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6 and once the rioting began, he wasted little time joining the mob, according to the statement of offense. He made it all the way to the East Rotunda doors where he helped rioters flow past police, his statement of offense notes, and eventually “pushed his way to the front of the mob” and “forcibly, voluntarily and intentionally grabbed hold of one U.S. Capitol Police officer’s riot shield.”
    ………….
    ……….(I)nvestigators noted how in footage from Jan. 6, Dykes stood “about a head taller” than many rioters around him and he could be seen on video in a tug-of-war over a riot shield with one officer. When Dykes finally managed to snatch the shield away, prosecutors said he lifted it over his head, turned away from the doors and started to reorient himself as members of the mob unleashed pepper spray at the officer. The scene was chaos as he started using the shield as a ram of sorts, the statement of offense notes, forcibly pushing his way through rioters in front of him and up against the overwhelmed police desperately trying to secure the East Rotunda door.
    …………

    Rip Murdock (79ebbf)

  143. @138 Trump said he could shoot a person on 5th ave. so why not kristi noem?

    asset (a8e268)

  144. For just one night, the pro-kidnapping protesters will be doing the country a favor.

    lloyd (e0cd62)

  145. So far there have been no kent states to wave the bloody shirt. This is no longer just about gaza something more is happening. Chicago 1968? The radical left is starting to get reinforcements from progressive democrats. The polls now show 50% of 18 to 35 support hamas and 25% don’t think Israel has a right to exist. (fox news) The bootle deposit crook rolls snake eyes and now says he wont attack rafah if hamas releases hostages. Another biden it turns out. I a lefty is now tougher on hamas then the bottle deposit crook! I warned months ago to many palestinian children were being killed to keep netanyahu in office and out of a jail cell. Comments about the protests from conservatives amuse yourselves ;but have no relevancy as this is a fight among the liberals and the left.

    asset (a8e268)

  146. For the sake of Fair and Balanced, Mrs. Montagu used to work at an animal shelter in our early days, and she’ll tell you there are no bad pets, but there are plenty of bad dog owners, and one of those bad dog owners is Biden himself.

    If you’re going to own some German Shepherds, then do the work of being with them and caring for them, not passing them off to handlers and putting them in strange high-traffic environments, like a White House.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  147. I know Ivermectin is not thought to have worked to protect against COVID, but it is a drug that gets looked at because of what it seems to be able to do to the immune system. It is also currently being studied to see if it can assist against cancers and human adenoviruses. Some people are dosed with tamoxifen for breast cancer and ivermectin is used because sometimes triple-negative breast cancers begin to resist tamoxifen and ivermectin restores sensitivity, receptivity of the cancer cells to the tamoxifen. I’m glad Doctors work with drugs off label… is it perfect? No.
    FWIW on COVID, Doctors also tried an over the counter antacid due to its anti histamine properties and also used two blood pressure medications. The antacid didn’t work and the two blood pressure meds are inconclusive but might help in relaxing the cardiovascular system while a patient is fighting off the virus.

    steveg (aa9e3d)

  148. I don’t have the energy to love *or* hate Trump/BOAR. But has anyone else noticed how many of his followers and hangers-on have gone batsh!t insane?

    Kanye, Mike Lindell, Laura Loomer, Kari Lake, just to name a few. And now Noem.

    qdpsteve again (25f709)

  149. The dog knew too much.

    Well but hey. It was about to come out with a book…

    qdpsteve again (25f709)

  150. That’s simplistic. Project Apollo created many more jobs than it directly paid for. Medicare crated many more jobs as well, as the services it paid for would not have been provided otherwise.

    Wait, what? Seriously, Kevin M, you can’t possibly believe this. Every dollar that went to the Apollo Project or Medicare was a dollar that could have been spent somewhere else in the economy which would have had far more efficiency and likely created way more jobs, or else it would have not contributed to our massive debt. If you want to say that the Apollo Project was a smashing success because we landed a man on the moon before Soviets did then I just want to ask why no other country has bothered to land a man on the moon since we have.

    And considering that Medicare is one of the drivers of the ongoing deficits I can see how you would believe that the money spent on it would not have been better utilized buying automobiles, homes, beer, tacos, or lawn chairs. If you think that all of the health care jobs provided for by Medicare spending would not have materialized in the private sector then maybe that’s arguable, but imagine if we did not have $35 trillion in debt how much money might have been released in the free market to solve our health care issues.

    JVW (b02843)

  151. @152 the political effect of not spending money on medicare is not in your equation. The same with welfare. Politicians came up with affirmative action to give black men a stake in the system and to stop cities being burned down every summer. Otto von bismark came up with the welfare state not to help the poor ;but to protect the rich from the continuous revolutions going on at the time. Milton freidmen, thomas sowell and other conservatives say its not fair to ad political violence to counter our economic policy. Life is not fair and people are not dinosaurs or sheep. People get upset here when I bring up that the court of last resort is not the supreme court ;but the street. The dred scott decision was finally adjudicated and settled july 3 1863 at cemetery ridge gettysberg pa. War is politics by other means. Politicians have to weigh the consequences of being john galt and unrestrained capitalism. To many here do not weigh the consequences of what they advocate assuming the police or military will solve the consequences.

    asset (a8e268)

  152. I don’t have the energy to love *or* hate Trump/BOAR. But has anyone else noticed how many of his followers and hangers-on have gone batsh!t insane?

    Kanye, Mike Lindell, Laura Loomer, Kari Lake, just to name a few. And now Noem.

    At first I wondered why Noem would think that these stories would give her cred, but then I remembered Moe poking Larry and Curly in the eyes.

    People have always loved slapstick.

    nk (09508a)

  153. And did you all know that Trumpkin is a character in the C.S. Lewis Narnia books? I only found that out yesterday, after calling Trump supporters Trumpkins for years and years. Nobody tells me anything.

    nk (09508a)

  154. For just one night, the pro-kidnapping protesters will be doing the country a favor.

    It did not cramp Biden’s act.

    “The 2024 election is in full swing. And yes, age is an issue. I’m a grown man running against a six year old.”

    “Did you hear what Donald just said about a major civil war battle? Quote, ‘Gettysburg. Wow.’ Trump’s speech was so embarrassing, the statue of Robert E. Lee surrendered again.”

    “Age is the only thing we have in common. My vice president actually endorses me.”

    “Trump is so desperate he started reading those Bibles he’s selling. And he got to the first commandment: You shall have no other god before me. That’s when he put it down and said this book is not for me.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/style/power/2024/04/27/president-joe-biden-jokes-white-house-correspondents-dinner/

    nk (09508a)

  155. Kristi Noem Clarifies Killing Puppies Makes Up Only 3% Of What She Does

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  156. Kudos to Mr. Maher for zinging the Gaza protesters. One of his lines…

    “Maybe if these Google employees had the slightest idea what kind of fundamentalist, oppressive assholes they’re supporting — Hamas, the Houthis, Hezbollah, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard — they might take it a little easier on the world’s greatest monster, Genocide Joe.

    “Genocide, by the way, is when you want to wipe out an entire people. That’s the stated goal of Hamas. That’s what From the River to the Sea means. Hamas would do that to Israel, but can’t. Israel could do that to them, but doesn’t. And you know how you can find that out? Google it!”

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  157. #155 nk – I like “Trummpista”, since it reminds me of the personal connection so many had to bad guys in Latin America. Examples; Peronista, Chavista, et cetera.

    Jim Miller (9aa7c3)

  158. Congratulations to NASA for getting the Voyager 1 to transmit data again.

    Jim Miller (9aa7c3)

  159. “Trumpista”, of course.

    Jim Miller (9aa7c3)

  160. Name calling. The adults are in the room.

    lloyd (5de531)

  161. Biden’s 13th-Quarter Approval Average Lowest Historically

    President Joe Biden averaged 38.7% job approval during his recently completed 13th quarter in office, which began on Jan. 20 and ended April 19. None of the other nine presidents elected to their first term since Dwight Eisenhower had a lower 13th-quarter average than Biden.

    George H.W. Bush had the previous low 13th-quarter average approval rating, at 41.8% in 1992. Donald Trump and Barack Obama, Biden’s immediate predecessors in office, averaged 46.8% and 45.9% job approval, respectively, at the same point in their presidencies.

    But don’t worry Bidenistas, this should help:

    Mounting Evidence Is Pointing To A Nightmare Scenario For The US Economy

    lloyd (5de531)

  162. If you want to say that the Apollo Project was a smashing success because we landed a man on the moon before Soviets did then I just want to ask why no other country has bothered to land a man on the moon since we have.

    Because nobody remembers who came in second place. Being first was the direct political benefit, but it is shortsighted to say it was the only benefit. Whole new industries were created by the space program; if it weren’t for it SpaceX wouldn’t exist (it started, and continues to be, a contract launch organization for NASA). And the Apollo program (temporarily) created a unity in the country that was sorely needed at the time, and sadly never been equaled.

    The technological innovations required to go to the moon (and the space program in general) have spread throughout American life. A few that are directly attributable to the Apollo program include aircraft digital fly by wire systems; food preservation processes; and the shock absorbing (base isolation systems) systems used to earthquake proof large buildings.

    Rip Murdock (e63693)

  163. Wait, what? Seriously, Kevin M, you can’t possibly believe this. Every dollar that went to the Apollo Project or Medicare was a dollar that could have been spent somewhere else in the economy which would have had far more efficiency and likely created way more jobs, or else it would have not contributed to our massive debt

    It jump-started a number of high-tech companies and industries, and the research needed had all kinds of useful by-products.

    The impact of the U.S. space program on our daily lives is almost incalculable. It initiated, pioneered or inspired advances and inventions in every kind of satellite (communications, weather, navigation, military), in medical instrumentation, in digital imaging and, of course, in computers — NASA’s early purchase of 1 million microchips kickstarted that nascent industry. In 1975, just three years after the last Apollo mission, the program’s return on investment was estimated at 15 to 1. By now it’s off the charts. It’s doubtful any other government-funded project has yielded as many dividends.

    https://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-donovan-moon-cold-war-apollo-program-20190704-story.html

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  164. Every dollar that was spent on Medicare improved and extended lives. It also sostered development of drugs and procedures that primarily benefited the aged — drugs and procedures whose research would not have been funded without the return promised by Medicare funding.

    All of these benefit current and future generations. What is extending life worth? DO you just see that as adding mouths to feed?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  165. If we did not have $35 trillion in debt how much money might have been released in the free market to solve our health care issues.

    No money would have gone into treating diseases that disqualified people for private insurance. The only reason we have significant research into cancer, heart disease, diabetes, vascular disease and other things that primarily affect people after their working years is that they now have health insurance that pays for the resulting treatments.

    In the decade after Medicare was created, life expectancy rose 3 years, the fastest rate before or since, rising by 0.5% per year in the last 5 years of that decade.

    Under the insurance rules of 1968, almost no one over 65 would have benefited from free market health care since they would have been largely excluded.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  166. Name calling. The adults are in the room.

    lloyd (5de531) — 4/28/2024 @ 9:13 am

    LOL!

    Rip Murdock (e63693)

  167. A website about how little people know:

    https://www.gapminder.org/ignorance

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  168. This isn’t remarked enough about Putin’s War Against Ukraine: Drones are changing the nature of modern warfare, and the side that has the most and the effective drones can come out on top, and they also negate differences in manpower.
    I don’t know how much of our aid involves drones, but the Ukrainians are making good use of what they have, using off-the-shelf technology. Putin is amping up on them, too.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  169. The real problem is that people are not good with numbers – and some of the statistics may be wrong or misleading.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  170. “Genocide, by the way, is when you want to wipe out an entire people.

    That’s what happened to the French residents if Algeria in about 1962 – although almost all of them were merely exiled – and they were saved from experiencing tyranny. Also to Jews in many Arab countries. Technically, genocide as defined by the genocide treaty is the elimination of a population group, not necessarily the killing of individuals.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  171. I don’t know how much of our aid involves drones, but the Ukrainians are making good use of what they have, using off-the-shelf technology. Putin is amping up on them, too.

    American drones, at least of the man-portable variety, are crap. The Chinese are WAY ahead there and anything doming out of DoD is hopeless junk.


    How the US Army Can Close its Dangerous—and Growing—Small Drone Gap

    n July, Ukrainian soldiers took to social media to voice complaints about training they received from US Army personnel in Germany. Chief among their criticisms was the seeming ignorance of commercial drone use on the battlefield. One soldier wrote, “The Americans have not participated in a serious war for a while now. Their army does not even have an analogue of the Chinese Mavik 3, it was a shock for us.” He added, “The concept of Maviks and the use of civilian copters is simply not even in their plans. Of course, they study our war, but they are still surprised that we use it this way.”

    Given that the Ukrainian military is locked in daily ground combat with one of the US Army’s most serious competitors, these criticisms should be particularly concerning to military leaders. Since then, additional complaints have trickled out in mainstream reports. A recent MWI article tells of Ukrainian soldiers describing the Army’s response to new threats and innovations as “lacking urgency due to a ‘business as usual’ attitude.”

    Ukrainian soldiers are right to highlight a serious gap in current US Army equipment, tactics, and training. When it comes to small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) for reconnaissance and strike at the squad to battalion level, the United States is behind the curve, partly due to self-imposed bureaucracy and institutional inertia. Meanwhile, US adversaries are gaining invaluable operational experience with these same technologies.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  172. There may be a 3-week ceasefire in Gaza accompanied by the release if 20 hostages (and some relatively large number of detainees held by Israel but this is all to cover up the real exchange)

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  173. , “The Americans have not participated in a serious war for a while now. Their army does not even have an analogue of the Chinese Mavik 3, it was a shock for us.

    It’s almost against U.S. military principles to use something not custom made for the army.

    That they haven’t caught up with this development shows an inability to exercise independent judgment.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  174. Across the pond…….:

    Five years ago, Britain’s Conservative Party scored a landslide victory in a general election that contained outlines of a realignment in that nation’s politics. Today, those same Conservatives appear headed for one of their worst defeats in a generation, an unraveling of a once-proud party that has come with astonishing swiftness.

    Based on current polls, the general election that will be held in the coming months — the date has not yet been set — looks likely to restore a reinvigorated Labour Party to power after 14 years in the minority. Those same polls suggest that Labour could emerge with a majority in the House of Commons that rivals or eclipses its strength after the 1997 election that brought former prime minister Tony Blair to power.
    ………….
    Since 2010, Britain has had five Conservative prime ministers, including three in 2022 alone. One of them, Liz Truss, lasted just seven weeks. That record tops by one the number of U.S. House speakers Republicans have run through in the same period.
    ……………
    The question that will come to the fore if the Conservatives lose as badly as some polls predict is whether they will be captured by fringe elements, who some analysts fear would make the party far more right-wing and hard-line on issues such as immigration, and ever more anti-Europe; potentially, more Trumpian.
    …………..
    British politics have been through a whirlwind over the past decade: a failed referendum on independence for Scotland in 2014, a general election in 2015, the Brexit referendum in 2016 that took Britain out of the European Union, another general election in 2017, then the election in 2019, followed by two years of the pandemic and then the rapid succession of leaders in 2022.
    …………..
    Labour inadvertently contributed to the Tories’ success in 2019. The party was led by Jeremy Corbyn, a far-left politician whose history and views proved anathema to many voters, not only in those working-class areas but also among moderates in the suburban areas around the big cities. As in the United States, those suburban voters, particularly college-educated women, have been shifting allegiance. But they would not go for Corbyn’s politics.
    ………….
    The result of these years of chaos and leadership turnover is that the Tories could now suffer a double reversal from 2019: They could lose many of those newly won working-class districts while shedding suburban voters who could not stomach Corbyn but are not particularly alarmed by the Labour Party’s current leader, Keir Starmer.

    Starmer has rebuilt the Labour Party, working to purge it of Corbynism and its corners of antisemitism. He has tried to put his focus on the broader electorate rather than the narrower segment of official party members. ………..

    On Thursday, there will be local elections in Britain. Conservatives are expected to suffer significant losses, perhaps as many as half of the seats they hold that are up for reelection. Most closely watched, however, will be two races for mayoralties currently in Tory hands. Losses in those races will be taken as an indicator of a shellacking in the general election and time to press the panic button.

    Current thinking is that Sunak will call the general election for late in the year, perhaps around the time of the election in the United States. But his team has been urged to move up that timetable to a summer election, depending on the outcome of the local elections.
    …………..

    Rip Murdock (e63693)

  175. That they haven’t caught up with this development shows an inability to exercise independent judgment.

    Cheap mass-produced drones don’t really interest the defense contractors.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  176. One of them, Liz Truss, lasted just seven weeks.

    But in those 7 weeks did a lot of damage.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  177. 177, Decisions are not supposed to be made only by contractors or people who want to work for them. Something faulty is ingrained in the culture of defense planning.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  178. More by the new Andy Rooney (could be)

    https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/28/opinion/san-francisco-public-toilet.html

    The toilet also needed approval from the Department of Public Works, the Planning Department, the Department of Building Inspection, the Arts Commission, the Public Utilities Commission, the Mayor’s Office on Disability and PG&E, the local electric utility.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  179. https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/25/world/middleeast/hezbollah-commanders-south-lebanon.html

    The Israeli Defense minister is claiming success in Lebanon. NYT has doubts or doubts about its meaning. (brought to you by the same experts who allowed October 7 to happen)

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  180. “American drones, at least of the man-portable variety, are crap.”

    In what regard? We can certainly buy non-Chinese flight controllers and piece parts (like cameras, speed controllers, and actuators…there’s no magic to assembling platforms comparable to DJI). Are you talking quad-copter style drones? What is the price range and payload capacity that you are considering? Commercial-application of drones in the US seem to be proliferating. We probably have a lot of flight restrictions that complicates testing and therefore discourages development. I would imagine that we have people plenty smart enough to write reliable software for navigation, image processing, and teaming. Just like semi-conductor fab facilities, we do need to stay out in front of supply chain dependence….but I suspect that we’re tracking and prioritizing. At least I hope so…

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  181. One of them, Liz Truss, lasted just seven weeks.

    But in those 7 weeks did a lot of damage.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/28/2024 @ 12:28 pm

    A rotting head of lettuce lasted longer than she did.

    She’s now transformed herself into a MAGA acolyte, claiming Britain’s Deep State is to blame for her fall. Apparently though, people aren’t buying it (literally).

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  182. In what regard?

    Note that I was talking about DoD devices, not what you can buy from Amazon.

    It’s based on my personal experience, which I can’t get into. But communications links, functional and software reliability, and electronic interference with onboard devices are some of the issues with the example I had access to.

    There may be other devices that are better.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  183. The problem is that with the restrictions and procedures of the DoD, you are pretty much just working with Yoyodyne*.

    ———
    * 5 points for the reference.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  184. I’m sure that AeroVironment makes fine drones, but they are not of the man-portable variety.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  185. She’s now transformed herself into a MAGA acolyte, claiming Britain’s Deep State is to blame for her fall.

    She threatened the system with libertarian dogma; it’s not impossible that the bureaucracies reacted by RFing her program. It’s also possible that the natural reaction of markets to severe disruption was to become conservative or cash out. In any event interest rates climbed dramatically and house loans in the UK are all adjustable.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  186. We have Global Hawks, Predators, Reapers, Ravens, etc. Granted these are not man portable, but the communication, signal integrity, and software reliability questions have been worked out. I won’t argue it’s trivial to apply it to a (much) cheaper, smaller, differently-piloted cousin platform, but it would seem if we wanted such an animal now, it’s not outside the technical competence of Lockheed, Northrop, Boeing, General Dynamics to produce it. Especially since I would wager that we have access to Chinese, Russian, and Iranian models and can reverse engineer out any engineering nuggets that might make them more reliable. I can maybe see that small outfits or research groups might struggle with preparing the special sauce. If our big companies aren’t involved, then that’s a DoD choice. My suspicion is that there are groups on the sly doing this. We just may not have those groups talking with the Ukrainians yet. But I also wouldn’t be surprised that we are behind with advancing the technology given we’re probably more focused on defeating drone swarms. But that’s just a guess.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  187. #176 The 2019 election in the UK was an example of what I call a “negative landslide”: The Conservatives didn’t do that much better, but the far left leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, did much worse, the second time around.

    Jim Miller (8a66a1)

  188. AeroEnvironment Switchblade is a man portable drone (or “loitering munition”) that is currently deployed with both the US and Ukrainian military. They have also developed the hand launched Puma surveillance drone.

    The Army has requested $120M for the Low Altitude Stalking and Strike Ordnance (LASSO) man portable system (which includes Switchblades) for its Infantry Brigade Combat Teams to provide “lethality in terms of stand-off and destruction against dismounted formations, armored vehicles, and tanks”.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  189. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/27/2024 @ 3:18 pm

    And you can cut defense by more than 10%, you can cut some things by 100%. Ten percent across the board is 1) fallacious and 2) simplistic. It mostly attempts to avoid thought.

    Better would be that you either cut something by 3% or increase it by 10%. Best would be no budget at all, but tying all spending to a source of revenue (which can include borrowing)

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  190. Lockheed, Northrop, Boeing, General Dynamics and lets throw in Raytheon will make drones that are too expensive per unit to be practical. Russian Spetsnaz units have been found and destroyed by modified off the shelf drones and grenades dropped from solo cups. The US is way behind the curve on the mid and low ends of the drone spectrum

    steveg (c0a885)

  191. Jim Miller (e1cbe4) — 4/27/2024 @ 4:17 pm

    About 100,000 Gazans, according to another source, have left the strip.

    This surprised e because I thought it became nearly impossible for people to leave the strip, but reading some things I think it is about right,,

    200,000 left in the five years before, reducing the population to just about 2 million.

    The NYT has had contact with various people. Here is one story:(they have large extended families in Gaza. This person had many more living relatives than dead ones, even though many of them got killed in November because they hadn’t left Gaza City, not understanding what would happen. You can also see it was not all bombing all the time ir else they wouldn’t have been able to check up on then=m and attempt a rescue.)

    https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/24/us/palestinian-family-gaza-war-death.html

    In total, around 20 of Adam’s relatives, including a brother, his elderly aunt and uncle, and the widow and children of his little brother Ahmed, had made it out of Gaza and into Egypt by the beginning of this month, either through their relation to citizens of other countries or by paying thousands of dollars for private evacuations. Many of them said they were present on the night of the airstrike in November and witnessed the destruction firsthand.

    In early March, Adam flew to Cairo for several days to check on them.

    In other places, they call ” paying thousands of dollars for private evacuations” human trafficking, which they shouldn’t.

    The central figure in the article’s father who was killed had previously visited New Jersey.

    Hs=is main interest is getting amily members out. He calls himself non polirtical, which is what people opposed to Hamas there do.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  192. One semi-surprising thing is that there were many people in Gaza who were relatively well off, including his father,

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  193. There could have been well over a million people evacuated from Gaza. (it never could be all. No matter what about 10% of the people always stay in hazardous situations.)

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  194. Sad!

    Donald J. Trump was evidently not happy with what he saw out the window of his chauffeured S.U.V. as he rode through Lower Manhattan on Monday morning for the beginning of opening arguments in his first criminal trial.
    …………
    Mr. Trump has portrayed his legal jeopardy as a threat to America itself, and he has suggested that the country would not put up with it. But the streets around the courthouse on Monday were chaos-free — well-patrolled and relatively quiet. As his motorcade made its way to the courthouse, the few Trump supporters gathered in the park were outnumbered by Trump detractors, who waved signs about his alleged liaison with a porn star.

    Mr. Trump had tried to gin up something noisier. Shortly after 7 a.m., he posted on his social media website that “America Loving Protesters should be allowed to protest at the front steps of Courthouses” and he followed this lament with a call for his supporters to “GO OUT AND PEACEFULLY PROTEST. RALLY BEHIND MAGA. SAVE OUR COUNTRY!”
    ………..
    Later in the morning, Mr. Trump sought to cast the poor turnout as more evidence of a plot against him. In a post at 8:50 a.m., he implied that would-be MAGA protesters were being discriminated against for political reasons.

    “Unlike at Columbia University where the Radical Left Palestinian Protesters sat on the Front Lawn, practically took over the School, and screamed, ‘Death to the Jews, Death to Israel, Death to America,’ and nothing happened to them, Lower Manhattan surrounding the Courthouse, where I am heading now, is completely CLOSED DOWN,” Mr. Trump posted on Truth Social. “SO UNFAIR!!!”

    The area was not, in fact, completely closed down. ………
    …………
    The demonstrations have so far been spotty at best.
    …………
    Over the last week, demonstrators visibly identifying as supporting Mr. Trump — with red hats or clothing, or banners and flags — have never totaled more than a dozen. On most days, the number of people total in the portion of the park designated for protesters for or against Mr. Trump has never been more than two or three dozen. …
    ………..
    One of Mr. Trump’s most dedicated supporters, the right-wing activist Laura Loomer, flew to New York from Florida and protested outside the courthouse every day last week. She had to return to Florida this week to take care of her two dogs, she said in an interview.
    ………….

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  195. “SO UNFAIR!!!”

    Said no winner ever.

    nk (09508a)

  196. but it would seem if we wanted such an animal now, it’s not outside the technical competence of Lockheed, Northrop, Boeing, General Dynamics to produce it.

    This was not my experience.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  197. Note my link in 173 was to westpoint.edu, which has some inside information.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  198. The area was not, in fact, completely closed down. ………

    I say open it up completely, and put a big “T” on the side of his car so everyone can know when to cheer.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  199. Rip Murdock (deb95b) — 4/28/2024 @ 4:38 pm

    Sadder!

    …………
    Donald Trump, a billionaire accustomed to jet-setting between adoring campaign rallies and his Florida estate, has spent two weeks—with as many as six to go—sitting unhappily at the defense table in the city where he built his real-estate empire and his 2016 White House campaign. Though he fumes daily about the 34 New York felony charges he’s facing, the small indignities of being on trial are what appear to bother him most.

    He’s freezing, he says, due to the building’s finicky heating system. In court he can’t eat or drink anything but water, robbing him of some of the multiple Diet Cokes he consumes in a typical day. He can use the bathroom only when the judge declares a break in proceedings. A panel of 18 New Yorkers—12 jurors and six alternates—have front-row seats to his every yawn, catnap and mutter.

    Perhaps worst of all, Trump must remain silent in court as witnesses who swear to tell the truth recount his alleged crimes and sexual impropriety several feet away.

    “He’s miserable,” said John Catsimatidis, the New York grocery-store magnate and a longtime Trump friend. “There is no more horrible thing than just having to sit there and be quiet.”
    …………
    Being on trial is hard for anybody, said public defender Tina Luongo, who heads the criminal-defense practice at the Legal Aid Society. Her jailed clients are shaken awake at Rikers Island at 4 a.m., thrown on a bus and handed a cheese sandwich and milk carton for lunch.

    “These folks have to sit awake, pay attention and not fall asleep, too,” she said.
    …………

    Rip Murdock (1db29c)

  200. Wait. That’s not the right link, is it?

    Let’s try again. (Link)

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  201. Yeah, that’s the one. (The first link also makes a good but derivative point about the ICJ finding.)

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  202. Alan derschowitz says on fox that pro palestinian demonstrators are potential hamas terrorists! Fox news then talks about a jewish girl roughed up at palestinian campus demonstration only at the end do they mention she was part of a pro-Israel counter demonstration. I warned about this stuff! Israel supporters of netanyahu are going to roo the day they pulled this stuff for a brief political gain. Vietnam war protesters and Iraq war protesters have not forgotten what happened to them to this day. Ask hillary clinton who lost the nomination in 2008 and the election in 2016 over the Iraq war. The Israel lobby is sowing the wind and real reap the whirlwind!

    asset (63a401)

  203. Rip,

    I noticed you’ve ignored polls lately. You loved showing Trump beating other Republicans. but you don’t give the same promotion to him beating Biden. Why is that?

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  204. NJ Rob a more important poll 50% of 18 to 25 support hamas and 25% says Israel has no right to exist. Deep state make take a poll on trump, they took one in dallas many years ago.

    asset (63a401)

  205. I noticed you’ve ignored polls lately. You loved showing Trump beating other Republicans. but you don’t give the same promotion to him beating Biden. Why is that?

    NJRob (eb56c3) — 4/28/2024 @ 8:04 pm

    I was more interested (and still am) in who Republican voters favored to be their nominee. Polling Trump/Biden 191 days before Election Day isn’t as predictive like the Republican primary race polls, where Trump was 20+ points ahead of his rivals the entire time.

    At best polls today show Biden and Trump essentially tied. The RCP average shows Trump +.9 in five-way race and the 538 average has Trump +1 in a three-way race with RFKJR.

    It’s gonna be a long six months.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  206. Votes not polls shows nikki haley and others still getting 15% to 20% of republican votes as late as this tuesday. 10% of democrats vote for other in primaries still. If its close RFK .jr and jill stein could decide who is president with help from cornel west in black areas.

    asset (63a401)

  207. Votes not polls shows nikki haley and others still getting 15% to 20% of republican votes as late as this tuesday. 10% of democrats vote for other in primaries still.

    So what? Those votes are still far short of a majority.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  208. asset (63a401) — 4/28/2024 @ 10:35 pm

    The primary races are over, the protest votes are meaningless. Trump and Biden are the nominees.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  209. NJRob (eb56c3) — 4/28/2024 @ 8:04 pm

    And like most Americans, I don’t find the general election matchup all that compelling. With the number of high quality candidates in the Republican primary field, it was interesting to see who might have challenged Trump.

    Alas, it was not to be.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  210. I would like to see Patterico address what his perspective is on the Linda Teran case. The allegations were occurring right in his own department (LA County DAs), from what I can tell.

    It also looks like Gascon was trying to sabotage Alex Villanueva’s re-election campaign for LA County Sheriff.

    qdpsteve again (c9e73d)

  211. So what? Those votes are still far short of a majority.

    That level of dissatisfaction is a problem for getting these people out to vote in November. These are F-the-nominee votes.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  212. These are people who took the time to go to the polls and tilt at a windmill. Most of the time the disaffected just go bowling. The can be counted on to go to the polls in November and vote for someone other than Trump or Biden.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  213. The allegations were occurring right in his own department (LA County DAs), from what I can tell.

    That may be off-limits. It’s one thing to talk about an election preference, but airing dirty laundry?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  214. @210 & 211 missing forest for the trees. Who will they vote for in general if its close.

    asset (63a401)

  215. 201. Donald Trump, a billionaire accustomed to jet-setting between adoring campaign rallies and his Florida estate, has spent two weeks—with as many as six to go—sitting unhappily at the defense table ….

    And so on and so on and scooby-dooby-dooby.

    It’s too bad that he did not experience this dehumanization much earlier in his thoughtless, careless, and selfish life. Then he might have grown up to be less blasé about police slamming prisoners’ heads into car door frames, allowing women to be executed, and who deserves to be called “people”.

    nk (6c45b4)

  216. #218

    Though everyone has forgotten about the Georgia case (or assumed it had been delayed by Fani’s goings on), it is still scheduled during the heart of campaign season. Trump is going to be nailed to the floor here in Georgia starting August 5, unless the Georgia Appeals court does him the solid they have not done yet, and that case is going to take forever.

    Appalled (7ea398)

  217. Appalled,

    read what you wrote. Your desire for bloodlust is noted, but your claims that Trump will be nailed proclaims your biases as does your complaints that the Appeals Court is doing “favors” rather than following the law.

    So much for justice being blind.

    NJRob (962f8e)

  218. Trump the Victim (cartoon)

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  219. Well qualified:

    Arizona state Sen. Jake Hoffman, one of the so-called fake electors charged in the Arizona 2020 election subversion case, announced Saturday that he’s been elected as a Republican National Committee national committeeman for the state.
    …………
    CNN previously reported that Hoffman sent a two-page letter to former Vice President Mike Pence on January 5, 2021, asking him to order that Arizona’s electors not be decided by the popular vote of the citizens, but instead by the members of the state legislature.
    ………….
    In interviews, Hoffman had repeatedly argued no electors be sent at all because “we don’t have certainty in the outcome of our election,” and to contest Democrat electors if they were sent.
    ………….

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  220. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/29/2024 @ 12:09 am

    I disagree. Most of them are partisan leaners who have vented their frustrations in the primaries but will end up voting for either Biden or Trump in general.

    For example, Bill Barr.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  221. #219

    I agree that these charges should have been addressed in 2022/2023 — not now. Problem is that the reason these things are delayed is that’s a part of the DJT legal strategy. If it ends up backfiring on him — tough.

    Appalled (22ebad)

  222. Ukraine Aid Lifts Defense Industry as Debate Over Profits Reignites

    Refilling the U.S. armory to replace weapons sent to Ukraine—and tens of billions in new aid confirmed last week—means big business for the U.S. defense industry for years to come.

    Lawmakers’ approval of a long-delayed $95 billion aid package frees up funding that had been frozen in Congress for four months. Two-thirds of it will go toward new military equipment for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, estimated analysts, as well as expanding U.S. production. U.S. military jets started flying fresh supplies from Pentagon stocks to Ukraine on Wednesday, within hours of President Biden signing the funding into law.

    Lockheed Martin and RTX, formerly known as Raytheon Technologies, have been the biggest beneficiaries of the $30 billion in federal contracts already awarded to supply Ukraine and refill U.S. weapon stockpiles. Other contractors including General Dynamics and L3Harris last week reported strong quarterly sales as they delivered on deals awarded over the past two years.
    …………
    Almost half of the new money will replenish U.S. stocks, which often involves purchasing newer, more expensive weapons than those being sent to the front in Ukraine. The $1 million Cold War-era ATACMS long-range rockets provided from the U.S. arsenal will be replaced with Lockheed’s more sophisticated PrSM missile, priced at $2.4 million apiece.
    ………….
    Lockheed said annual output of GMLRS missiles fired from its Himars rocket launchers is expected to rise to 14,000 next year from 10,000 at present. With a range of around 50 miles, the rockets have been a key part of Ukraine’s front-line fighting.

    “Tactical and strike missiles is where we really saw a lot of sales activity,” said Lockheed finance chief Jay Malave. Lockheed’s missiles unit reported a 16% rise in revenue during the latest quarter.

    RTX makes the Patriot air-defense system and the Stinger antiaircraft missile. Neil Mitchill, the company’s chief financial officer, said the company didn’t pause production or efforts to expand capacity when the Pentagon said in January that additional funds for Ukraine had run out. He said RTX had opportunities to win contracts in about $40 billion of the extra aid earmarked for Ukraine.
    …………..
    The U.S. Army plans to boost monthly output (of 155mm artillery shells ) to 100,000 next year from around 40,000 currently, an effort that had stalled awaiting the new aid but now is back on track. That includes a new shell plant in Texas run by General Dynamics.

    Pentagon and White House officials have spent months stressing that the aid package will support domestic jobs and bolster U.S. defenses through expanded capacity to produce weapons. “We are going to help Ukraine, but we have to help ourselves, too,” said Army acquisition chief Doug Bush at an industry conference last month.
    …………

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  223. Rip Murdock (deb95b) — 4/29/2024 @ 9:23 am

    Related:

    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.), fresh off a big bipartisan victory on overseas aid that reasserted America’s muscular role in the world, said he wants to pump up military spending to guard against new challenges from China, Russia and Iran.
    …………
    Military spending will be central in the last major legislative fight before the November elections—and likely the last for McConnell as minority leader—with Congress facing a Sept. 30 deadline for funding the government in the new fiscal year. President Biden has called for $895.2 billion in base defense spending, the most on record but also an amount constrained by the 1% cap that was agreed to in last year’s Fiscal Responsibility Act, the debt-ceiling deal reached between Biden and former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.).
    …………..
    McConnell has long argued that the conflicts in Ukraine, the Middle East and Asia are interconnected, and that the abandonment of Kyiv would be a gift to America’s adversaries. He calls Russia, Iran, China and North Korea “the axis of aggressors.” Any effort to boost military spending would run into opposition from progressive Democrats among others.

    When the Senate took up the House-passed aid package on Tuesday, 31 Senate Republicans voted for the foreign aid package—nine more than voted for similar legislation in February. ……….
    …………..
    McConnell said the increased Republican support in Tuesday’s vote was a result of lawmakers finally getting a chance to focus solely on geopolitical issues. The earlier aid vote had come just after the failure of a bipartisan effort to condition aid on curbing illegal immigration at America’s southern border. Trump played a central role in sinking the border deal, but in recent weeks declined to pressure lawmakers to block the aid bill.

    “The border discussion, which seemed to go on endlessly, kind of distracted everybody,” McConnell said. “What I noticed in the last couple of months,” he said, “is how much more attention to the facts was occurring among our members.”

    McConnell said that, in turn, enabled Republicans to stand up to their own voters, who he said had been turned against Ukraine aid by sources including media personality Tucker Carlson. Carlson declined to comment after McConnell singled him out after the vote.

    “More members, I think, were willing to tell their constituents, ‘By the way, what you think is not correct,’” he said.
    …………..

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  224. Related,

    The Biden Family criminal enterprise gets cash transferred to them through the Quatari sponsors of terror. Nothing to see here.

    NJRob (962f8e)

  225. Only one presidential family business has been found to be a criminal enterprise in the courts.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  226. Europe prepares for the end of US protection:

    Europe planning new ‘nuclear umbrella’ with 300 French nuke missiles spread across continent for showdown with Russia

    EUROPE could be gearing up to forge a bubble of nuclear protection from Russia made up of 300 French ballistic missiles.

    French president Macron has suggested the submarine-launched warheads are fanned across the continent to shore up collective defence.

    His offer followed a German minister urging the UK and France to forge a “nuclear shield” to deter Russia.

    Leaders in Europe are worried about the ramifications of a possible Donald Trump win in the November presidential election.

    And nuclear threats are coming out of Russia thick and fast as Putin’s illegal war in Ukraine drags on.

    Macron said he wanted to open up conversations about “missile defence, long-range weapons and nuclear weapons” across Europe.

    The French premier, who has been incredibly vocal about stepping up defence in the face of Putin, said we need a “credible European defence”.

    The current US-led Nato alliance, he believes, does not offer enough protection.

    France, he says, “is ready to contribute more to the defence of European soil,” independently from America, offering up the 300-ballistic and cruise missile store.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  227. NJ Rob at 220:

    Your desire for bloodlust is noted, but your claims that Trump will be nailed proclaims your biases as does your complaints that the Appeals Court is doing “favors” rather than following the law.

    NJ Rob at 227

    The Biden Family criminal enterprise gets cash transferred to them through the Quatari sponsors of terror.

    Your desre for bloodlust is also noted and your biases are proclaimed. Thank you for your promptness in getting those out there.

    Appalled (7ea398)

  228. The Biden Trump Family criminal enterprise gets cash transferred to them through the Quatari Saudi Arabian sponsors of terror. Nothing to see here.

    FIFY.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  229. Man,

    so many people want to avoid talking about the Biden’s corruption and trail of criminal behavior.

    It’s a fascinating case study for those who want to partake in it.

    NJRob (962f8e)

  230. He keeps on knockin’ , but no one’s answerin’::

    The Supreme Court on Monday for a second time shot down a request from former Trump adviser Peter Navarro to avoid further prison time over his contempt of Congress conviction.
    …………
    Attempting a procedural maneuver that has not worked in decades, Navarro then resubmitted the request to Justice Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s first high-court nominee.……….

    Gorsuch referred the request to the full court, which considered it during its closed door conference on Friday. The court denied the request on Monday without comment.
    …………..

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  231. so many people want to avoid talking about the Biden’s corruption and trail of criminal behavior.

    It’s a fascinating case study for those who want to partake in it.

    NJRob (962f8e) — 4/29/2024 @ 10:46 am

    Given the ineptitude of the House impeachment inquiry, which even the chair of House Oversight Committee is running away from, what’s there to discuss? Influence peddling by the children and other relatives of government officials are crimes committed by them, not the President.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  232. Is Biden’s family registered as an agent of a foreign government? Inquiring minds want to know.

    NJRob (962f8e)

  233. > Is Biden’s family registered as an agent

    The question is nonsensical. Individual members of the family may be registered as agents and may be required to register as agents, but the family as a whole has no legal existence and therefore is not subject to a registration requirement.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  234. So which members are registered and which aren’t? Who has ties to all these terrorist organizations and is being funded by them?

    NJRob (962f8e)

  235. This appears to be the story behind NJRob’s questions:

    https://www.politico.com/news/2024/04/28/jim-biden-qatar-testimony-00154704

    Is Joe Biden responsible for his family exploiting their relationship to him? Is there any evidence Joe Biden encourages this? Given the Trump family’s connections with Saudi Arabia (among others), is this even somwthing to bother about?

    Appalled (7ea398)

  236. https://hotair.com/john-s-2/2024/04/29/columbias-president-says-negotiations-with-protesters-have-failed-so-what-comes-next-n3787417

    Clownworld commies with the support of the faculty showing what side they are really on.

    Supporting the left is supporting this cancer metastasizing throughout America.

    NJRob (962f8e)

  237. Is Jared Kushner a made man or just a son-in-law like Carlo?

    With fifty (50) years of Trump’s dirty dealings littering the landscape across three continents, his sycophants’ desperate quest for tu quoque is pathetic.

    nk (cb210e)

  238. This appears to be the story behind NJRob’s questions……..

    The key paragraph in the article is:

    If substantiated, the alleged arrangements would constitute some of the closest known financial links between a relative of President Joe Biden and a foreign government.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  239. And so on and so on and scooby-dooby-dooby.
    nk (6c45b4) — 4/29/2024 @ 2:29 am

    Trying to picture nk back in the day with his bell bottoms on, groovin’ to Sly and the Family Stone.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  240. Rip Murdock (deb95b) — 4/29/2024 @ 1:35 pm

    Too many qualifiers (“if substantiated”, “alleged”) to be taken at face value.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  241. Appalled, why can’t you understand that *both* the Trump and Biden admins can be dirty?

    I’ll never in a hundred years understand why people think Biden’s crap smells like roses just because Trump also has issues. The eagerness of some people here to excuse away anything Joe does is bewildering.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  242. That’s fine, Rip. You enjoy your delusion that Biden is the most perfect person ever to walk the face of the earth, while Trump is the devil himself.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  243. And again I better say: I am NOT a Trump fan. Some people here tend to either have short memories and/or believe that any criticism of Biden automatically makes one a BOAR fanboi.

    In fact I’m likely to leave my ballot blank for POTUS this year. RFK appeals to me far more but I know he has tons of weirdness of his own.

    Meanwhile, X is all about who DJT will pick for his VP, now that Noem has taken out and shot her political future. The two names getting a lot of traction are DeSantis, who supposedly met with Trump just recently, and Tulsi Gabbard.

    Hoping Ron told Don, no way but thanks for the free Big Mac lunch. Tulsi would be a good choice but most likely still wouldn’t get me to vote for the ticket.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  244. I think only JVW likes Tulsi.

    As for DeSantis, a negative times a negative is a positive only in math. Biden is still going full bore towards his left fringe, but it seems to me that Trump has been inching towards the center after Haley dropped out.

    nk (cb210e)

  245. nk, I judge Trump’s VP picks assuming that for whatever reason, BOAR won’t be able to complete anything close to his full 2025-2029 term (should he be elected of course). So IMHO, whomever is Don’s pick will become the actual president before too long.

    Would I absolutely love to see DeSantis become president? Yes, but not at the expense of burying himself in Trump’s baggage.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  246. U. of texas demostrations continue despite police tough law enforcement. The left is ready to hit back hard so escalation. Kent state happened in ohio not berkley or columbia. Martyrs are in waiting. They have a rendezvous with death at some disputed barricade.

    asset (160ed4)

  247. BTW, qdpsteve, what’s BOAR?

    nk (cb210e)

  248. How should we treat the victims of a con man? I think the decent thing to do is with sympathy.

    But what if they refuse to recognize they are victims? (And some victims of con men do.) That’s harder, but I think we should still feel some sympathy, and not give up on reasoning with them.

    For example, I don’t think Jim Hoft is a bad man, or even unpatriotic, desite the dmage he has done to America. But I do think he got conned, and is paying the price.

    Far-right website The Gateway Pundit is declaring bankruptcy, founder Jim Hoft announced Wednesday.

    The big picture: The site is facing a lawsuit from two election workers over accusations it committed ballot fraud to alter the outcome of the 2020 presidential election in Georgia.

    Reminder: People who follow the Loser risk losing their money, their health, and even their freedom.

    Jim Miller (c9fdea)

  249. From March 1952 until at least May 1956, the Micronite filter in Kent cigarettes contained compressed blue asbestos within the crimped crepe paper, which is carcinogenic. (DU)

    nk (cb210e)

  250. nk, BOAR is my nickname for Donald J. Trump. I thought most people here would like it. 🙂

    Big
    Orange
    Angry
    Revenge

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  251. Jim, Gateway Pundit is/was notorious for running with conservative ‘news’ stories without proper (or sometimes any) corroboration.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  252. Also, fun fact: any civil award against Hoft can be discharged (i.e. made moot) via bankruptcy.
    Learned this when I worked at a popular consumer bankruptcy law firm.

    We had a few clients with failed businesses, who used bankruptcy to avoid having to fulfill their workers’ final paychecks. Ick.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  253. That’s fine, Rip. You enjoy your delusion that Biden is the most perfect person ever to walk the face of the earth, while Trump is the devil himself.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0) — 4/29/2024 @ 1:47 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever said anything remotely like that about Biden, but feel free to prove me wrong. I only think accusations should be backed up with evidence, which the Republican impeachment investigation has been completely lacking. But I do agree with you on the second point, however. 👺

    I have said repeatedly, I don’t intend to vote for any candidate for president in November.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  254. The eagerness of some people here to excuse away anything Joe does is bewildering.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0) — 4/29/2024 @ 1:45 pm

    Because there is no direct evidence of any wrongdoing by Joe Biden, as opposed to his sons?

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  255. I’ve read through this article twice, and it’s not the “Biden family”, it’s one Jim Biden.
    Two, this all happened when Joe was a private citizen.
    Three, Jim wanted Qatari money but didn’t get any.
    Four, Joe is “blessed” with having two losers in his family, a son and a brother.

    One word: Nothingburger.

    Paul Montagu (d4d407)

  256. #254 qdp – I know that, but I think he took a turn for the worse when the Loser came on the scene. Once, before then, I tried to correct an error Hoft had made. He replied politely, but it appeared to me that he didn’t understand my point.

    Jim Miller (c9fdea)

  257. Rip, ask yourself this question:

    If Donald Trump’s sons and daughters were accused of these exact same crimes, would you assume the President was involved in their malfeasance? Would you say “it’s obvious” that he’s guilty, and that his congressional supporters are just covering for him? There is NOTHING Trump’s supporters in the House and Senate can be guilty of, that Biden’s supporters can’t also be guilty of.

    Bear in mind that Trump’s being dirty and uncouth himself, does not necessarily mean he’s involved with the same crimes his kids are.

    And, once again for everyone: believing Trump isn’t guilty of a particular allegation isn’t nearly the same as being his fan and/or lickspittle.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  258. Rip, apologies for my #245 as it was too much.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  259. I put Gateway Pundit, Instapundit, Red State, Hot Air, the various talking heads on the right, et al, in the “gold digger” category of Trump supporter. In it for the Benjamins like AOC told her sister BOC at the barricade. Sure, they were peddling a “conservative” line before, but the Trump brand helped to hold on to and substantially expand their market.

    nk (cb210e)

  260. Rip, ask yourself this question:

    If Donald Trump’s sons and daughters were accused of these exact same crimes, would you assume the President was involved in their malfeasance? Would you say “it’s obvious” that he’s guilty, and that his congressional supporters are just covering for him? ………

    No, unless there was direct evidence of President Trump’s involvement. In both cases the children of Trump and Biden are responsible for their own actions.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  261. nk (cb210e) — 4/29/2024 @ 3:45 pm

    Spot on, nk. I don’t know how anyone can think they’re getting objective news from these places.

    When Trump came on the scene, every TV host, radio host, and political writer who had previously been conservative had to make a choice – “Do I say the emperor has no clothes, and watch my audience dwindle, or do I jump on the Trump train?” Most chose the latter.

    norcal (a601c0)

  262. Sad!

    Far-right cable news network, One America News, published a full retraction on Monday of a March 27th article regarding former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen.
    …………
    “OAN today has retracted its March 27 article entitled ‘Whistleblower: Avenatti Alleged Cohen­ Daniels Affair Since 2006, Pre-2016 Trump Extortion Plan,’ and is taking it down from all sites and removing it from all social media. This retraction is part of a settlement reached with Michael Cohen. Mr. Avenatti has denied making the allegations. OAN apologizes to Mr. Cohen for any harm the publication may have caused him,” read the opening paragraph of the retraction posted to OAN’s website.

    The settlement with Cohen, procured by Justin Nelson, did not include any money paid to Cohen. The retraction made absolutely clear, however, that the article was false and included a line in all-caps that read, “NO PERSON SHOULD RELY ON THE MARCH 27 ARTICLE OR THE ALLEGATIONS CONTAINED THEREIN.”

    “The article, quoting a source, falsely claimed that Mr. Cohen and Ms. Daniels ‘were having an affair since 2006’ and that, according to a source, ‘the whole hush money scheme was cooked up by [Mr. Cohen] to extort the Trump Organization before the 2016 election.’ These statements were false. OAN regrets their publication,” added the retraction.
    ………….

    Comedy gold!

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  263. BOAR is my nickname for Donald J. Trump. I thought most people here would like it.

    I favor Incredible Dolt In Orange Toupee. IDIOT.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  264. When Trump came on the scene, every TV host, radio host, and political writer who had previously been conservative had to make a choice

    Who goes Nazi?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  265. To be fair, really nothing major on the right is as bad as Gateway Pundit. Not even Truth Social.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  266. I glance at Instapundit from time to time. There’s still some ponies there. Not so much Hotair, Ace or Redstate.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  267. Another media Trumpinista!

    BuDuh (43e611)

  268. Spot on, nk. I don’t know how anyone can think they’re getting objective news from these places.

    When Trump came on the scene, every TV host, radio host, and political writer who had previously been conservative had to make a choice – “Do I say the emperor has no clothes, and watch my audience dwindle, or do I jump on the Trump train?” Most chose the latter.

    norcal (a601c0) — 4/29/2024 @ 3:57 pm

    Define objective media?

    You want anti-Trump bias.

    Enjoy the rest of the left-wing media.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  269. BuDuh,

    Nancy sounds like lots of the Biden apologists. Muh Trump they say.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  270. @258 “One word: Nothingburger.”

    One word: Hypocrisy.

    There’s much more evidence of illegal activity by Biden than there ever was by Trump before the two year Weissman fishing expedition set sail.

    lloyd (55b7d0)

  271. @224 “I agree that these charges should have been addressed in 2022/2023 — not now. Problem is that the reason these things are delayed is that’s a part of the DJT legal strategy. If it ends up backfiring on him — tough.”

    So, the Trump legal strategy was to get Willis and her lead prosecutor to hook up? Amazing. The Georgia indictments came down in August 2023 after Willis launched an investigation two and a half years earlier. From January 2024 onward, it was the Willis/Wade show. The carefully crafted delays and dumb and dumber screw ups were the prosecution’s alone. But it conveniently may keep Trump “nailed to the floor” during the campaign, so it’s all good.

    lloyd (55b7d0)

  272. Kevin, how about MORON (Man Of Royal Orange Nincompoopery)? 😉

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  273. And to NJRob, BuDuh, lloyd and whembly:

    There’s acronyms I could share for Biden as well, but none are printable on family blog. 🙂

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  274. Apologies in advance everyone, but I just had to share this. Found it at X/Twitter.

    The kind of bipartisanship that I can 100% support. 🙂

    (And, trigger warning for asset.)

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/GMYoGBdaYAAWVHh?format=jpg&name=large

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  275. There’s much more evidence of illegal activity by Biden than there ever was by Trump before the two year Weissman fishing expedition set sail.

    What a factless pantload.
    The facts are that only Hunter is on the hook for illegal activity, having mostly to do with his tax affairs.
    There’s no evidence of illegal activity by Jim Biden, but lots of evidence that he tried to trade in on his brother’s name to scare up some income (Hunter, too, in that regard).
    There’s no evidence of illegal activity by Joe. The closest was his possession of classified materials, for which he was cleared by a Republican Special Counsel.

    The facts of Trump’s illegal activity is well document in his four indictments.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  276. Here’s the thing: Biden is, at worst, a mundane crook. Maybe he lines his pockets with graft. Trump is a bust-out artist and the thing he wants to bust out is the United States.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  277. There’s much more evidence of illegal activity by Biden than there ever was by Trump before the two year Weissman fishing expedition set sail.

    I’m sorry, musta missed it.
    Is there a contest going on right now between Biden and Trump to see who can get away with the most crimes? Who’s winning? Is there a prize for winning? What is it, pray tell?

    If Biden has committed a crime, go after him.
    If Trump has committed a crime, go after him.
    This ain’t rocket science, people.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  278. lloyd, you’re not necessarily wrong, but:
    even if Biden is as dirty as we think he is, that doesn’t excuse a single thing Trump has done.

    Yes, people: the door swings both ways.

    qdpsteve again (929fe0)

  279. @271 define objective media non-existent. The subject can never be the object. Sarte. So called objective un-bias media came about int the 1950’s by the corporate deep state media to fool the public in its war on communism.

    asset (15027b)

  280. “There’s much more evidence of illegal activity by Biden than…”

    Yet it appears that no Republican investigative committee, prosecutor, or news organization can present this “evidence” in a persuadable manner. It’s always over-promised accusations and under-delivered facts and evidence.

    The GOP is stuck in a bog of false equivalencies and ignorant conspiracies. The more I see, the more I worry for our future.

    Outside of Ukraine, the Democrats are misguided on most policy and would willingly spend us into a black hole and cynically divide us by race, income, and culture. But the GOP can’t tell the truth and can’t clean up its own mess. One’s critical reasoning has to be broken to look at Trump’s actions and not have concerns.

    Trump is a grown man who’s never been held to account for his actions…or has always been able to pay his way free. And now we have an entire ecosystem of enablers dedicated to protecting him yet again. This won’t end well.

    AJ_Liberty (5fc741)

  281. Very well said, AJ_Liberty. Every word.

    nk (c1a523)

  282. I’ll say it again, since no one has challenged it:

    “There’s much more evidence of illegal activity by Biden than there ever was by Trump before the two year Weissman fishing expedition set sail.”

    Trump’s indictments have no relevance. Whether Biden actually did anything illegal has no relevance. A two year fishing expedition by the DOJ might find something. Suddenly, you don’t want that.

    Inadequate evidence of wrongdoing didn’t matter to any of you in 2017. It matters to you now. Hypocrisy is your tribe.

    lloyd (55b7d0)

  283. Lloyd, In 2017 it wasn’t Democrats that opened on investigation on Trump. It was Jeff Sessions, one of Trump’s earliest supporters, a life long and partisan republican who Trump had selected to be his Attorney General.

    Time123 (dfa322)

  284. ’ll say it again, since no one has challenged it:

    “There’s much more evidence of illegal activity by Biden than there ever was by Trump before the two year Weissman fishing expedition set sail.”

    Biden had a money launderer for his campaign manager and a notorious liar who paid $45,000 to have dinner with Putin in 2015 for his National Security Advisor? How come Comer did not tell me that?

    nk (c1a523)

  285. So, you were against it then, Time123? And, you’re against it now? This isn’t about what the DOJ did, and is doing now, it’s about what the DOJ should do. What should they do, Time123, based on the standard that has been set?

    The investigation was McCabe’s, not Rosenstein’s, “insurance policy” according to anti-Trump text messages. Sessions was obligated to recuse. McCabe was not. The hypocrisy dates back years.

    lloyd (53ed02)

  286. https://thefederalist.com/2024/04/29/communist-defectors-warn-about-four-stages-of-subversion-and-america-is-on-the-last-one/

    Forty years ago, a KGB defector, Yuri Bezmenov, revealed the systematic plan Soviet communists used to take down countries and establish a communist-type society and regime. More recently, a Chinese defector immigrant, Xi Van Fleet, has been on a crusade to warn Americans about the parallels between what is happening in America today and what Mao did in the Chinese Cultural Revolution.

    The systematic plan Bezmenov revealed involves four fluid stages of communist subversion: 1) demoralization, 2) disorientation, 3) crisis, and 4) normalization. In Mao’s America, Xi Van Fleet explains how Mao’s destruction of the “Four Olds” (old ideas, old culture, old customs, and old habits) is being replicated by today’s leftist cancel culture, which will end what is left of freedom in America if not stopped.

    Demoralization

    Plain as day what the left is doing to America.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  287. Bragg did Trump a favor with this hush money prosecution as far am I’m concerned. If Trump really had been a deep cover Soviet mole planted to bring down America, he would not have needed Michael Cohen to so unspeakably incompetently deal with Stormy Daniels. The SVR, the Russian foreign intelligence service, would have “dealt” with her.

    See? I can be objective when it comes to Trump.

    nk (c1a523)

  288. AJ_Liberty (5fc741) — 4/30/2024 @ 5:03 am

    Thank you, AJ.

    Paul Montagu (895dc0)

  289. If you want to know how feckless and ineffectual the administrators at Columbia are, Mr. “Zionists Don’t Deserve To Live” was expelled from Columbia but is one of leaders of the current building break-in. Terrorists don’t deserve to live.

    Paul Montagu (895dc0)

  290. How totally unexpected! Which is to say completely expected.
    https://apnews.com/article/trump-stormy-daniels-hush-money-election-2024-d2f9badee0b28a60d32bc98c0d4e783f

    The audio at the link contains a quote straight from ahem Trump’s mouth about the judge himself, which the judge probably did not consider one of the violations of the gag order. They have thick skins in that regard.

    nk (e0791f)

  291. It’s always over-promised accusations and under-delivered facts and evidence.

    Well, some people accept the hype and find the facts tedious to sort through.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  292. The GOP is stuck in a bog of false equivalencies and ignorant conspiracies. The more I see, the more I worry for our future.

    You’re right to worry. See my #57.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  293. The Federalist (not to be confused with The Federalist Society or anything George Washington was involved with) is the high-brow version of Breitbart. Same lies, better told.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  294. Mr. “Zionists Don’t Deserve To Live” was expelled from Columbia but is one of leaders of the current building break-in.

    Will Columbia prosecute this asshat? Criminal trespass, breaking and entering, unlawful occupation, etc.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  295. It’s not all hopeless at Columbia:

    Columbia Elects an Israeli Student

    Meet the surprising president-elect of the student body of the School of General Studies, one of Columbia University’s four undergraduate colleges. Her name is Maya Platek. She is a proud Israeli who once worked for the Israel Defense Forces spokesperson’s unit.

    Anyone watching the goings-on at the university’s Morningside Heights campus these past two weeks might easily mistake Columbia for a wholly owned subsidiary of Hamas Inc. Ms. Platek’s election throws a wrench into the protester narratives. It signals that at least some at Columbia want students to be able to walk the campus without harassment—and life to get back to normal.

    “I am always willing to listen,” Ms. Platek says, “but also very good at speaking up when I think something’s wrong.”

    She isn’t shy either. Ms. Platek is a member of Students Supporting Israel, a national organization whose mission is “to be a clear and confident pro-Israel voice on college campuses.” It also aims for something Columbia plainly needs: “to reassure students who oppose the demonization of the State of Israel on campus that they are not alone.”

    This isn’t Ms. Platek’s first rodeo. In October, she posted a petition onChange.org seeking to remove Joseph Massad, a Columbia professor who teaches modern Arab politics and intellectual history. She directed attention to his Oct. 8 article for an online publication called the Electronic Intifada celebrating the “stunning victory” against Israel the day before.

    Mr. Massad is still there, a melancholy fact several congressmen brought up during Columbia President Nemat Shafik’s grilling two weeks ago before the House Education Committee. But Ms. Platek’s petition fleshed out what people mean when they complain that Columbia tolerates antisemitism.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  296. Lloyd notes:

    So, the Trump legal strategy was to get Willis and her lead prosecutor to hook up? Amazing. The Georgia indictments came down in August 2023 after Willis launched an investigation two and a half years earlier. From January 2024 onward, it was the Willis/Wade show. The carefully crafted delays and dumb and dumber screw ups were the prosecution’s alone. But it conveniently may keep Trump “nailed to the floor” during the campaign, so it’s all good.

    As things stand now, the Willis/Wade episode has not delayed the trial date. If it gets delayed — it will be because the Georgia State Appeals Court takes the stance that the Trump appeal of the detemination that Fani can still try the case is getting heard and trial prep must be held up until that’s finished. The reason this trial will be ready to go in August/Septemeber is that Federal trials have been successfully delayed by Trump’s appeals to the Supreme Court or Judge Cannon’s corrupt antics. If those trials were on schedule, Georgia would have ended up being pushed back to 2025.

    So, yep, it’s not good that the GOP nominee for President will be stuck in an Atlanta courtroom (where the air conditioning may not work) in August. Fall is nice here, though, so if the trial runs long he’ll at least have good weather.

    Appalled (ec917d)

  297. Judge Cannon’s corrupt antics

    Corrupt” is a pretty powerful word.

    What are the top 10 examples of Judge Cannon’s “corrupt” antics?

    BuDuh (43e611)

  298. BuDuh:

    #302 I’ll let one of your regular sparring partners take that on, if they want. I think it’s a time waster — much like a Cannon hearing in this case.

    Appalled (ec917d)

  299. So… nothing.

    Figured as much.

    I’m sure the crowd that tackles false accusations against Biden will be here shortly to dress you down. They don’t like evidence free commentary.

    BuDuh (43e611)

  300. Judge Cannon’s corrupt antics

    “Corrupt” is a pretty powerful word.

    What are the top 10 examples of Judge Cannon’s “corrupt” antics?

    BuDuh (43e611) — 4/30/2024 @ 1:19 pm

    There’s about as much evidence of Judge Cannon’s corruption as there is for President Biden’s.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  301. See..

    Try harder next time, Appalled.

    BuDuh (43e611)

  302. This will give you something to chew on, BuDuh:

    https://www.cnn.com/2024/04/03/politics/legal-fights-judge-trump-documents-trial/index.html

    “Corruption” relates to Cannon’s penchant for odd rulings that all somehow benefit the delay strategy of one of the parties in this case or give credence to his peculiar reading of the Espionage Act and the Presidential records Act, but are just not quite enough to appeal up to the 11th circuit.

    But I think you know all the arguments here.

    Appalled (ec917d)

  303. Speaking of protests Happy Vietnam victory day! and who finally won at kent state! Something to keep in mind if it happens again.

    asset (5d4653)

  304. Ouch!

    The District of Columbia’s Office of Disciplinary Counsel issued a recommendation this week battering the credibility of former Donald Trump Justice Department attorney Jeffrey Clark, saying Clark’s “dishonest attempt to create national chaos” in the run-up to Jan. 6 meant the only suitable sanction would be disbarment because, put simply, nothing else would do.
    ……….
    “We must do what we can to ensure that this conduct is never repeated. The way to accomplish that goal is to remove from the profession lawyers who betrayed their constitutional obligations and their country. It is important that other lawyers who might be tempted to engage in similar misconduct be aware that doing so will cost them their privilege to practice law. It is also important for the courts and the legal profession to state clearly that the ends do not justify the means; that process matters; and that this is a society of laws, not men,” wrote disciplinary counsel Hamilton Fox III. “Jeffrey Clark betrayed his oath to support the Constitution of the United States of America. He is not fit to be a member of the District of Columbia Bar.”
    ……….
    “As a member of the D.C. Bar, Mr. Clark swore an oath that he would ‘support the Constitution of the United States of America.’ As an officer in the Department of Justice, he undoubtedly took a variation of that oath. By attempting to violate the Rules of Professional Conduct in the ways he did, he betrayed those oaths and, in doing so, his country. Lawyers who betray their country must be disbarred.”
    ………
    ……..Fox argued Clark’s so-called “proof-of-concept” letter about the fake elector slates blatantly violated federal rules for lawyers when it came to the most basic requirements for practicing law: honesty.
    ……….
    “Mr. Clark has emphasized that the letter was never sent, claiming that he engaged in nothing but a vigorous discussion of how to proceed and that he is being prosecuted for a ‘thought crime.’ But his conduct was much more than a debate about policy,” Fox wrote. “This was an attempt to do the President’s dirty work to undermine, with no basis, the integrity of a presidential election — to do what Mr. Rosen and Mr. Donoghue refused to do, just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to President Trump. Mr. Clark intended to send, in the name of the Department of Justice, a dishonest letter. The fact that he was stopped from doing so by lawyers who displayed the integrity he lacked does not mitigate the impact of what he did and what he almost accomplished — what he surely would have done as Acting Attorney General, had Mr. Rosen not insisted on and prevailed in that Oval Office meeting.”
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  305. The 11th Circuit found that Cannon “abused her discretion” when she tried to suppress the seized Mar-a-Lago documents on the first appeal by the prosecution.

    Abuse of discretion is a pretty heavy hit against a judge. Not corruption, exactly, but something in-between “self abuse” and “not fit to be a judge”.

    I predicted then that Jack Smith was never going to get even a quantum of solace from this judge on any matter which was not cut and dried in favor of the government.

    nk (f5b17c)

  306. @310

    I predicted then that Jack Smith was never going to get even a quantum of solace from this judge on any matter which was not cut and dried in favor of the government.

    nk (f5b17c) — 4/30/2024 @ 3:24 pm

    GOOD.

    Couldn’t happen to a more deserving prosecutor.

    In fact, prosecutors deserves zero solace in every case. Make them prove the charges in clearest way possible.

    whembly (0ce7ed)

  307. See..

    Try harder next time, Appalled.

    BuDuh (43e611) — 4/30/2024 @ 1:48 pm

    I am not the last word on who is corrupt, BuhDuh.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  308. 235 years ago today.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  309. Who cares, Rip?

    Team Biden may have an interest in your updated resume. I don’t.

    BuDuh (922bdd)

  310. About Columbia:

    Police officials said individuals that are inside the building could be charged with burglary in the third degree, criminal mischief and trespassing, while those in encampments outdoors on campus grounds could be charged with trespassing and disorderly conduct.

    Officials also alleged that outsiders not affiliated with Columbia were among those occupying Hamilton Hall, and that these people played a role in the escalating tactics on campus.

    Any guesses whether Bragg will prosecute?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  311. Catoggio making sense again:

    It’s the siren song of the anti-anti-Trump conservative: No matter how repulsively Trump behaves, he’ll deliver better policy results than the Democrats will. If you take that logic seriously, there’s no action so grotesquely authoritarian that it can’t be rationalized as a price worth paying to produce a better, more conservative America.

    But you shouldn’t take it seriously because you won’t get better policy outcomes long-term under Trump. Just ask … Bill Barr.

    A year ago, he astutely diagnosed the problem with entrusting the right’s agenda to a figure as erratic as Trump. “If you believe in his policies, what he’s advertising is his policies, he’s the last person who could actually execute them and achieve them,” he told an audience in Cleveland. “He does not have the discipline, he does not have the ability for strategic thinking and linear thinking or setting priorities or how to get things done in the system.”

    “You may want his policies, but Trump will not deliver Trump policies,” he went on to say. “He will deliver chaos and, if anything, lead to a backlash that will set his policies much further back than they otherwise would be.”

    https://thedispatch.com/newsletter/boilingfrogs/heightening-the-contradictions/

    So true.

    Since then, Barr has done a Ted Cruz, and now plans to vote for Trump.

    norcal (632524)

  312. Since then, Barr has done a Ted Cruz, and now plans to vote for Trump.

    When only weevils are running, you have to vote for the lesser weevil.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  313. The other thing I did not know before this trial, besides Trump probably not being a Russian mole, was that Trump and Pecker had fabricated the story about Ted Cruz’s father being in Dallas when JFK was assassinated.

    That makes Ted Cruz lower than a snake’s belly in my estimation for reconciling with Trump to get his endorsement.

    nk (460664)

  314. Completely fabricated down to fake photos. There should be a tort there, if nothing else (probably not since his dad is dead, but…)

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  315. nk (460664) — 4/30/2024 @ 6:09 pm

    The other thing I did not know before this trial, besides Trump probably not being a Russian mole, was that Trump and Pecker had fabricated the story about Ted Cruz’s father being in Dallas when JFK was assassinated.

    Ted Cruz made a big speech about that condemning Donald Trump on May 3, 2016, the day it happened – this was timed to coincide with the Indiana primary.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pdy2de3LTe4 Ted Cruz withdrew from the race after he lost that primary.

    I thought Roger Stone originated that story, or at least he claimed credit for it. I think Trump himself mentioned that story on the campaign trail.

    I also think the picture was supposed to have been taken some time before November 22, 1963, in New Orleans.

    Of course it didn’t say anything about Ted Cruz, or even his father (except that his father was anti-Castro and would not have associated with Oswald and the picture didn’t even look like him) but the National Enquirer played it like it could mean something.

    The National Enquirer dropped it after one day. But Ted Cruz had withdrawn from the race, maybe to stop the Enquirer from publishing more slander or slander-like things. Ted Cruz later made some effort in 2016 to take the nomination away from Donald Trump at the convention.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  316. That makes Ted Cruz lower than a snake’s belly in my estimation for reconciling with Trump to get his endorsement.

    nk (460664) — 4/30/2024 @ 6:09 pm

    100%. Trump attacked not just Cruz’s father, but Cruz’s wife, too. Have you no honor, man?

    Cruz knows who and what Trump is, and licks his boots anyway. He is worse than Trump.

    norcal (632524)

  317. Cruz knows who and what Trump is, and licks his boots anyway. He is worse than Trump.

    To be fair, we as a nation backed some truly terrible people: Pinochet, Somoza, Batista, Franco, Alfredo Stroessner, the South African Nationalist Party, the Saudi Royal family, etc. Why? Because the other guys were worse.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  318. Because the other guys were worse.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/30/2024 @ 7:23 pm

    Sure. So why is Cruz backing not only the guy who is worse, but a guy who insulted his father and his wife? I hope the answer isn’t a Senate seat.

    norcal (632524)

  319. @316 Yes norcal, who are we going to believe, Moby Nick or our lying eyes? Stagflation, two wars, open borders, anti-Semites in the State Department, Afghanistan pullout, student debt giveaways, interest rates, gas prices, leftist judges, a justice system turned into a DNC campaign tool, etc. To believe anti-anti-Biden logic, we should find it appealing that Joe may be more effective at getting his policies through. Convincing!

    lloyd (a7afef)

  320. Yes norcal, who are we going to believe, Moby Nick or our lying eyes? Stagflation, two wars, open borders, anti-Semites in the State Department, Afghanistan pullout, student debt giveaways, interest rates, gas prices, leftist judges, a justice system turned into a DNC campaign tool, etc. To believe anti-anti-Biden logic, we should find it appealing that Joe may be more effective at getting his policies through. Convincing!

    lloyd (a7afef) — 4/30/2024 @ 7:50 pm

    I’m going to believe what Bill Barr said a year ago.

    I’m with you on the border issue and student debt giveaways. I’m a retired immigration officer, and the border issue makes my blood boil. I’ve mentioned before what a big slap in the face debt forgiveness is to those who paid back their loans.

    Trump and Biden co-own inflation because of all the money given away during Covid under both Presidencies; therefore, they both are responsible for the high interest rates it is now taking to tame inflation.

    They also co-own Afghanistan. Trump is the one who proposed withdrawing (a big mistake, since we were there at minimal cost), and said Biden wasn’t getting out fast enough.

    I don’t like many of Biden’s policies, but Trump is a tyrant who wants to terminate the Constitution. That is a higher order of concern.

    He’s still, STILL lying about the 2020 election. Trying to overturn an election is utterly disqualifying.

    norcal (632524)

  321. Lloyd, it’s hard to believe you’re serious. You’re changing the meaning of terms to make things seem worse than they are.

    Stagflation? In the 70s when the term was coined we had 5+% unemployment and 5+% inflation for over 8 years! There was one year (2022; which, to be fair, was bad!) that had higher than 5% inflation and this past year it dropped back to 3.4%. And during that time the economy has been humming with near record low unemployment for years!

    Two wars?! We aren’t at war with anyone! You’re going to count the US’s support of Ukraine and Israel as “two wars.” We have to count wars by our allies as wars to make it seem like things are bad?

    Yes, the border is a mess. Why say there are “open borders” when there aren’t?

    The state department is not any more anti-Semetic than it’s ever been.

    The Afghanistan pullout followed Trump’s plan.

    Sure, you can be upset by student debt forgiveness, but that’s a normal policy disagreement.

    I’m not even sure what you’re complaining about with gas prices (again, outside of 2022), interest rates, or the Justice Department.

    If you find yourself having to pretend things to rationalize a choice… maybe don’t rationalize that choice?

    Nate (cfb326)

  322. Protesters at Columbia removed by NYPD after Columbia University gave authorization. About 100 people arrested, some from the tent city on the quad (the tents have been left alone – it’s up to the university to decide what to do with them and with personal belongings left behind) and 40 inside Hamilton Hall, most on the first floor, which about 50 police entered through a window.

    The reason given is that some were identified as professional protesters with no connection to the university and fears they would escalate. And they did some damage to security cameras at least.

    A few minor scuffles still taking place on university grounds but no injuries reported. There’s also some trouble at City College.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  323. When only weevils are running, you have to vote for the lesser weevil.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/30/2024 @ 6:02 pm

    Wait a minute. You repeatedly argue the opposite. You’re Mister Vote Third Party because you refuse to settle for the lesser weevil.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  324. Stagflation? In the 70s when the term was coined we had 5+% unemployment and 5+% inflation for over 8 years!

    In 1979 it was 11.3% and 1980 it was 13.3$
    The prime rate hit 20% in early 1980. You couldn’t really get a mortgage.

    Saying it was over 5% really minimizes the problem that hit in 1979-80

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  325. You’re Mister Vote Third Party because you refuse to settle for the lesser weevil.

    But I’m not talking about how I vote, I’m talking about what “rational” people do.

    Me? At this point, I’m voting for C’thulhu, as he is the greatest weevil.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  326. Have you noticed that these 5-way polls neglect the Libertarians, who will probably be the only third party on all ballots?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  327. @326 Nate, the country is objectively worse pertaining to the issues I listed, plus many others not listed. If you want to quibble that they aren’t as worse as described, fine. My description stands, for all of them. In particular, your assurance about the State Department is plainly ridiculous. If all these issues were happening under Trump’s (or any Republican’s) watch, we’d be hearing a lot worse here and I wonder if you’d be bothered enough to counter any of it.

    lloyd (a7afef)

  328. Have you noticed that these 5-way polls neglect the Libertarians, who will probably be the only third party on all ballots?

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/30/2024 @ 8:33 pm

    Here are the five fabulous choices:

    Weekend at Bernie’s

    Coup plotting con man

    “Vaccines cause autism”, “Sirhan Sirhan didn’t murder my father” conspiracy theorist

    Diarrhea of the mouth

    Green dreamer

    norcal (632524)

  329. The Afghanistan pullout followed Trump’s plan.

    Sure it did…

    Start here:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmDXiSTbycU

    BuDuh (922bdd)

  330. BuDuh, I usually read your links, and often find them worth reading, but I’m not willing to watch a 4 hour video. Would you like to summarize what you want me to see there?

    Nate (cfb326)

  331. @315 He better not if he wants to get re-elected!

    asset (c5cbab)

  332. Left activists now joining collage protesters to teach them how power politics work. Protests spread across the country even in mormon Utah!

    asset (c5cbab)

  333. @337

    Settle down, Beavis asset.

    norcal (a490b2)

  334. Fighting going on at UCLA between two different groups of protesters. It was started by pro-Israel protesters (some were waving Israeli flags) It took some time for police to arrive. It’s been going on a few hours.

    This does resemble Weimar Germany, except there it was going on between Communists and Nazis,

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  335. These things all follow a predictable path.

    The public relations war was prepared in advance and ready to go as much as the actal October 7 raid was.

    The organizers mobilized their cadres and quickly swelled their ranks with volunteers some more sincere than others.

    Now the “official” chaoticists have been mobilized to escalate the nuisance and create martyrs if they can, and opportunistic “volunteer” chaoticists, again of varying sincerity, are joining in.

    nk (460664)

  336. And like Alan Seeger told Princess Michael of Kent, there are the sporadic internet trolls yapping for attention like puppies at a noisy party excited by the commotion.

    nk (460664)

  337. Nate,

    if we were using the same terminology and categories for inflation that we used in the 1970s, inflation is around 18%. For someone who claims the mantle of righteousness, I figured you’d know that.

    NJRob (8e0c83)

  338. On Saturday, “joyful crowds” turned out to celebrate new Sound Transit commuter rail line. Or so said the Seattle Times. Top Democrats headlined the celebration, pleased at this “progressive” triumph.

    I have to admit that I smiled as I read the article, and watched a little of the TV news stories. The line links two poverty-stricken cities, Bellevue and Redmond. It is six miles long, and cost, so far, a measly 3.7 billion. It already has an additional, special police unit. Supposedly, it will be linked to the much larger Seattle-based system real soon, so that it can be used for something practical, like getting to the Seatac airport. As far as I can tell, trips on it will be slower, for most riders, than the buses, which have been in use for years.

    I smiled, because the whole thing is so absurd — but I do feel sorry for my younger family members and friends in the area, who will have to pay for all this.

    (For the record: At 80, I have given up driving, at least for now. I use buses in this area regularly. and have found them adequate for my simple needs.)

    Jim Miller (157b85)

  339. 340. nk (460664) — 5/1/2024 @ 5:46 am

    The public relations war was prepared in advance and ready to go as much as the actal October 7 raid was.

    Yes, I think so. There were people rushing to condemn Israel within a day or two – before there was anything to condemn. They wanted people to pick their side.

    But at the same time they had to keep it tightly held and highly secret or else Israel might be forewarned.

    Exactly how both goals were accomplished I don’t know enough to make a good guess.

    But I think the people who planned this did not have contact with anyone in the United States before the October 7 raids. Or if there was anyone they did not take any steps.

    The organizers mobilized their cadres and quickly swelled their ranks with volunteers some more sincere than others.

    The cadres existed but, except for the most highly trusted people, they could not be told that anything was imminent.

    They started fast, but not too fast.

    There seems to have been another round that was timed to take place right after the Congressional hearing with the president of Columbia University. There seems to be an attempt to whipsaw college administrators.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  340. 299. The School of General Studies has many nontraditional students.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  341. The other thing I did not know before this trial, besides Trump probably not being a Russian mole, was that Trump and Pecker had fabricated the story about Ted Cruz’s father being in Dallas when JFK was assassinated.

    Yeah, I was shocked to find out that wasn’t true. About as much as this photo.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  342. Some faculty is involved also,

    https://www.npr.org/2024/05/01/1248099600/campus-protests-faculty-arrests-letters-no-confidence-votes

    At Northwestern the university negotiated a deal with the protesters to promote more propaganda.

    evidently written before last night

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/columbia-northwestern-florida-campus-protests-israel-palestine-30761ae8

    On Monday Northwestern University said it reached an “agreement” with the leaders of its anti-Israel encampment, which has sprawled across the campus lawn and onto Sheridan Road. In exchange for removing the tents, Northwestern will fund two visiting Palestinian faculty members for at least two years, scholarships for five Palestinian undergraduates and a safe space for Middle Eastern and North African Muslim students.

    Presumably, what they didn’t do is agree to any disinvestment which might be illegal.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  343. https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/donald-trump/national-enquirer-ted-cruz-father-rafael-lee-harvey-oswald-rcna149027

    The paper had published a photo allegedly showing Cruz’s father, Rafael Cruz, with Lee Harvey Oswald handing out pro-Fidel Castro pamphlets in New Orleans in 1963, not long before Oswald assassinated President John F. Kennedy.

    Trump repeatedly referred to the story on the campaign trail and in interviews.

    “I mean, what was he doing — what was he doing with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before the death? Before the shooting?” Trump said in an interview with Fox News in May 2016. “It’s horrible.”

    Manhattan prosecutor Joshua Steinglass asked Pecker about the story’s origins during the trial Tuesday in Manhattan. Pecker said that then-National Enquirer editor-in-chief Dylan Howard and the tabloid’s research department got involved, and Pecker indicated that they faked the photo that was the foundation for the story.

    “We mashed the photos and the different picture with Lee Harvey Oswald. And mashed the two together. And that’s how that story was prepared — created I would say,” Pecker said on the witness stand.

    Asked by Steinglass whether Cruz had gained popularity in the presidential race at the time, Pecker said, “I believe so.”

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  344. Have you noticed that these 5-way polls neglect the Libertarians, who will probably be the only third party on all ballots?

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/30/2024 @ 8:33 pm

    The Libertarians don’t have a presidential candidate yet, their convention will be held in late May. All of the potential candidates are nobodies.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  345. Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e) — 5/1/2024 @ 2:29 am

    Oh please-talk about an exaggeration.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  346. Fighting going on at UCLA between two different groups of protesters. It was started by pro-Israel protesters (some were waving Israeli flags) It took some time for police to arrive. It’s been going on a few hours.

    This does resemble Weimar Germany, except there it was going on between Communists and Nazis,

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e) — 5/1/2024 @ 2:29 am

    Jews fighting back.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  347. 331. Kevin M (a9545f) — 4/30/2024 @ 8:33 pm

    Have you noticed that these 5-way polls neglect the Libertarians, who will probably be the only third party on all ballots?

    No. I haven’t seen them mentioned in any news articles, either.

    They invariably poll names of candidates, not parties, except in races for the House of Representatives.

    The Libertarians have probably not yet chosen a candidate, so they are missing from all the polls. It helps maybe that sources from the two major political parties always menttion Robert=rt F. Kennedy Jr., Cornell West, Jill Stein and- who else?

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  348. Well, I mean this incident at UCLA resemblest happened in Weimar Germany, not the situation as a whole.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  349. UCLA reminds me of Mao’s indoctrination camps where the fevered followers mauled those who weren’t righteous enough.

    NJRob (8e0c83)

  350. Well, I mean this incident at UCLA resemblest happened in Weimar Germany, not the situation as a whole.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e) — 5/1/2024 @ 9:22 am

    Still sounds like you’re equating the pro-Israel protesters to Nazis or communists.

    Rip Murdock (deb95b)

  351. All of the potential candidates are nobodies.

    That’s what happens when the party and its principles are the main draw.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  352. Still sounds like you’re equating the pro-Israel protesters to Nazis or communists.

    Indeed, when it is more like “Jews fighting back.”

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  353. It’s closer to hardhats vs hippies.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  354. “A Dog, A Goat, A Girl, And A Gun” may turn out to be serendipitous for Kristi Noem after all. It might not get her Vice President of the United States but it could very well get her president of some university.

    nk (0d1f33)

  355. Arizona 1864 abortion law repealed.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  356. Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/1/2024 @ 12:47 pm

    Don Quixote would be proud.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  357. “A Dog, A Goat, A Girl, And A Gun”

    nk (0d1f33) — 5/1/2024 @ 1:15 pm

    Ahaha! I am totally using that.

    norcal (3f57bd)

  358. Arizona 1864 abortion law repealed.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/1/2024 @ 1:40 pm

    Interesting factoid: One of the two Republicans who crossed party lines is married to one of the Supreme Court justices who was in the majority allowing the law to into effect. Once the 1864 ban is repealed, abortions will be banned after 15 weeks, which is no ban at all, since by far most abortions occur in the first trimester (93.5%) and over 50% are medical, as opposed to surgical.

    Also, Florida’s six-week ban on abortions goes into effect today. It is unlikely to be repealed in November as the constitutional amendment will require a 60% supermajority to pass. A recent poll from Florida Atlantic University’s Communication and Public Opinion Research Lab shows that 49% support Amendment 4; 19% oppose; and 32% don’t know.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  359. Sometimes Democrats and Republicans do work together, even in Congress. For example:

    Fentanyl kills more than 200 Americans daily, the equivalent of a full passenger plane crashing and killing everyone aboard every single day. And we know that China plays a surprisingly central role in this tragic scenario.

    As Anne Milgram, head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, noted last fall, nearly all fentanyl precursors come from the People’s Republic of China. But knowing the source is not enough. The families of fentanyl victims are owed an answer to a far more important question: why?

    Why are all these drugs coming from China?

    The authors of this hard-hitting opinion piece:

    Mike Gallagher, a former Republican congressman from Wisconsin, was chairman of the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party. Raja Krishnamoorthi, the committee’s ranking Democrat, represents Illinois’s 8th Congressional District.

    Jim Miller (436d39)

  360. @342 I’m not sure what you mean, Rob. Can you clarify? I’m certainly open to any information you can provide.

    Nate (cfb326)

  361. #365 (and preceding) For those who want to argue about historical inflation rates, here’s a handy table:

    Caution: It is a serious error to ascribe all, or usually even most, changes in inflation to presidents and their policies. For one thing, presidents are not all powerful, may not even be able to get their programs through Congress.

    For another, even absolute monarchs may not have control over external events. Here’s a historical example that should be better known, since something like it is sure to happen again.

    Jim Miller (762269)

  362. Jim, I don’t have any real disagreements with anything you posted here.

    Nate (cfb326)

  363. Nate, it really is an extraordinary hearing. I do recommend listening to it in its entirety.

    Of the many things covered there are specifics to how Biden and crew were not obligated to do any of the agreement(which I don’t understand why that isn’t obvious to anyone who understands the power that a new administration has.). Also the generals are clear about how they didn’t want the in country force to go below a certain threshold. They presented Trump with that number and he deferred to the generals and their expertise. Biden did the opposite.

    I may listen to it again and if I do I will post time stamps if I have time. Again, I really think everyone should listen to certain hearings in there entirety. And this is one of them. The generals were very candid in responding to the questions.

    BuDuh (922bdd)

  364. Don Quixote would be proud.

    “A futile and stupid gesture”

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  365. Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/1/2024 @ 5:36 pm

    Ain’t that the truth.

    Rip Murdock (1db29c)

  366. @363 You don’t need a super majority to vote the legislature out. The republicans will try to prevent as many democrats as possible from voting.

    asset (e56bab)

  367. Pretty simple.

    https://www.shadowstats.com/alternate_data/inflation-charts

    Use the same categories they did under Carter and you see what inflation currently is.

    All the government is doing is gaming the system to pull wool over the public’s eyes.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  368. @354

    UCLA reminds me of Mao’s indoctrination camps where the fevered followers mauled those who weren’t righteous enough.

    NJRob (8e0c83) — 5/1/2024 @ 9:27 am

    Most revolutions starts out with both the malcontents and the impressionable young adults.

    We need to start calling them that.

    Commies.

    whembly (86df54)

  369. Ain’t that the truth.

    The point, which you so carefully miss, is that sometimes such a gesture is needed.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  370. whembly (86df54) — 5/2/2024 @ 7:06 am

    We need to start calling them that.

    Commies.

    They’re not

    A lot of them are Trotskyites (Democratic Socialists of America)

    They are descended from organized groups who didn’t like the fact that they were kicked out of the Communist Party by Stalin’s people, and wouldn’t give up.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  371. Please, take a gander of this article as the author seems to have done his research:
    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/what-happens-when-the-law-and-the-indictment-do-not-state-what-the-crime-is/?utm_source=recirc-desktop&utm_medium=homepage&utm_campaign=river&utm_content=featured-content-trending&utm_term=first

    The prosecution flouts New York’s constitution because the felony business-records-falsification statute (§175.10) does not describe with specificity what is meant by “another crime” — i.e., assuming a person falsifies business records with a fraudulent intent to conceal “another crime,” the statute does not elaborate, by describing conduct or citing other statutory provisions, what these other crimes are that would trigger the felony penalty.

    When it comes to due process, it is about as basic as it gets that, to be sufficient, penal statutes and indictments must put people on notice of, respectively, what conduct has been proscribed and what proscribed conduct has been charged.

    When basic due process is denied, we get the confusing farce that is the ongoing trial.


    No matter what you think of this author’s position… the think that struck out to me is this – what is the limiting principle that a prosecutor can nebulously point to this “other crime”?

    Is that up to the Judge?

    whembly (86df54)

  372. @379

    A lot of them are Trotskyites (Democratic Socialists of America)

    They are descended from organized groups who didn’t like the fact that they were kicked out of the Communist Party by Stalin’s people, and wouldn’t give up.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e) — 5/2/2024 @ 7:45 am

    So…

    Commies.

    Gotcha.

    whembly (86df54)

  373. Perverse Google Calendar operation (but please don’t call it a bug):

    Back in February I entered a number of appointments for April. At the time, Google knew I was in the Mountain Standard time zone. Then, in March, I “moved” to the Mountain Daylight time zone, and Google helpfully moved all my appointments to an hour later.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  374. The point, which you so carefully miss, is that sometimes such a gesture (voting Libertarian) is needed.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/2/2024 @ 7:34 am

    Futile gestures are a waste of time. They may make you feel good, but they accomplish nothing.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  375. Arizona 1864 abortion law repealed.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/1/2024 @ 1:40 pm

    Because the repeal didn’t include an emergency provision allowing it take effect immediately, the “repeal” won’t become law until July.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  376. Futile gestures are a waste of time. They may make you feel good, but they accomplish nothing.

    Tell that to the Boston Tea Party. Tell me, Rip, have you ever considered working outside the box?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  377. Because the repeal didn’t include an emergency provision allowing it take effect immediately, the “repeal” won’t become law until July.

    It would have required more votes, which they did not have.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  378. Tell me, Rip, have you ever considered working outside the box?

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/2/2024 @ 10:17 am

    Only when it makes sense.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  379. Only when it makes sense.

    Irony is not dead.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  380. The Libertarians had the opportunity of a life in 2016: two weak major party candidates while the LP had two experienced governors. Rather than promising a Libertarian lean to governance, they provided the usual craziness…plusu the discomfort of bobbling the Aleppo question.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  381. As I said, voting Libertarian may feel good, but it accomplishes nothing.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  382. @390

    https://twitter.com/JudiciaryGOP/status/1786049236418609249?

    Plead thr 5th.

    NJRob (23e640) — 5/2/2024 @ 12:06 pm

    Was this the guy that was originally on the NY prosecution team trying to bring charges to Trump prior to Bragg taking over?

    whembly (86df54)

  383. whembly (86df54) — 5/2/2024 @ 12:31 pm

    Was this the guy that was originally on the NY prosecution team trying to bring charges to Trump prior to Bragg taking over?

    But I think it was a different crime, I think based on the same thing that Trump was fined in the civil suit (about property evaluations)

    Bragg chose a weaker case.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  384. @391

    But I think it was a different crime, I think based on the same thing that Trump was fined in the civil suit (about property evaluations)

    Bragg chose a weaker case.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a) — 5/2/2024 @ 12:46 pm

    ooooof…

    Pleading the 5th as a Prosecutor… is not a good look.

    whembly (86df54)

  385. quoted in 377:

    ” the statute does not elaborate, by describing conduct or citing other statutory provisions, what these other crimes are that would trigger the felony penalty.

    It’s not the statute I think that needs to state that, it’s the indictment!

    Otherwise, what?

    A charge that the general purpose of the falsifying of the records, IN THE MIND OF THE DEFENDANT, was to cover up some sort of crime?? And that the defendant didn’t have to know, or even have an opinion, as to what crime, or whose crime, it was?

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  386. 393. whembly (86df54) — 5/2/2024 @ 12:48 pm

    Pleading the 5th as a Prosecutor… is not a good look.

    But prosecutors generally have immunity – the type of immunity Trump wants.

    What crime could he possibly be charged with? Perjury somewhere else??

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  387. @393

    It’s not the statute I think that needs to state that, it’s the indictment!

    Otherwise, what?

    A charge that the general purpose of the falsifying of the records, IN THE MIND OF THE DEFENDANT, was to cover up some sort of crime?? And that the defendant didn’t have to know, or even have an opinion, as to what crime, or whose crime, it was?

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a) — 5/2/2024 @ 12:50 pm

    Right?

    The fundamental defect of this indictment, imo, is that Bragg refused to include the other crime in the indictment.

    Because, when Trump’s convicted (and let’s be honest, he will bill)… the appeal will throw out this conviction on principle that the defendant’s must be put on notices to all crimes being alledged in the indictment.

    whembly (86df54)

  388. @394

    Pleading the 5th as a Prosecutor… is not a good look.

    But prosecutors generally have immunity – the type of immunity Trump wants.

    What crime could he possibly be charged with? Perjury somewhere else??

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a) — 5/2/2024 @ 12:52 pm

    Right?

    Is he worried that he may be charged with some sort of fraud against the courts?

    whembly (86df54)

  389. whembly (86df54) — 5/2/2024 @ 1:09 pm

    The fundamental defect of this indictment, imo, is that Bragg refused to include the other crime in the indictment.

    I think he included three or four possibilities, in general terms at least.

    https://nypost.com/2023/04/04/braggs-case-is-a-legal-mess-what-is-he-even-charging-trump-with

    Bragg released an indictment that was so vague on key elements that it is unclear what the grand jury thought it was voting on. He vaguely referenced state and federal election laws and later refused to add any details on how they relate to the prosecution….After the arraignment, Bragg made sweeping references to state and federal election laws before saying that he didn’t have to give such details. He just filed the first charges against a former president and refused to specify the basis for the felonies.

    He then held a press conference and refused to answer questions about this basis because he “doesn’t have to.”

    In court, his prosecutor has been going on about Trump trying to influence the election – which is not a crime, even if dishonest means are used.

    https://nypost.com/2024/04/23/us-news/trump-prosecutors-reveal-case-rests-on-proving-conspiracy

    A prosecutor in the case, Joshua Steinglass, told judge Juan Merchan and Trump’s lawyers during a sidebar Tuesday “the entire case is predicated on the idea that there was a conspiracy to influence the election in 2016,” according to a report by CNN.

    Another prosecutor, Matthew Colangelo, told jurors during opening statements on Monday Trump orchestrated a “criminal scheme to corrupt the 2016 election” then “covered up that conspiracy by lying in his New York business records … over and over again.”

    There are some more specific laws they cited. But I think the jury’s not being asked to find that some specific statute was violated ad then covered up.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  390. 397. whembly (86df54) — 5/2/2024 @ 1:11 pm

    Is he worried that he may be charged with some sort of fraud against the courts?

    I think it would have to be criminal. An indictment brought for an illegitimate reason.

    A Baltimore prosecutor was recently convicted but it was on two counts pf lying to improperly take withdrawals from her retirement account under the guise of COVID relief, and in a separate trial, of making a false mortgage application when she was Baltimore City State’s Attorney, relating to the purchase of a condominium in Long Boat Key, Florida (she was acquitted her of making a false mortgage application related to her purchase of a home in Kissimmee, Florida.)

    Whenever they investigate someone they look at all documents they signed.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  391. The fundamental defect of this indictment, imo, is that Bragg refused to include the other crime in the indictment.
    ……..
    whembly (86df54) — 5/2/2024 @ 1:09 pm

    If the failure to include “the other crime” mad the indictment fundamentally defective, I assume Trump’s lawyers would have challenged the indictment on those grounds. However, under New York law, Bragg was not required to do so. Bragg is required to prove, however

    that Trump intended to commit, aid, or conceal another crime—in this case, either a violation of the Federal Election Campaign Act, New York Election Law § 17-152, or New York tax law. Importantly, DANY does not have to prove that Trump actually violated any of the three predicate crimes, but rather that by falsifying (or causing the falsification of) business records he had the intent to commit, aid, or conceal the commission of such crime(s). Further, the jury need not find that Trump had that intent as to all three predicate crimes—a conviction is proper if jurors are satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt as to an intent to commit at least one predicate crime per count.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  392. Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 5/2/2024 @ 1:48 pm

    More:

    In denying Trump’s motion to dismiss, Justice Merchan upheld DA Bragg’s theory under this statute, namely: “the People allege that Defendant intended to violate N.Y. Election Law § 17-152 by conspiring to ‘promote the election of any person to a public office… by entering a scheme specifically for purposes of influencing the 2016 presidential election; and that they did so by ‘unlawful means,’ including by violating FECA through the unlawful individual and corporate contributions by Cohen, Pecker, and AMI; and… by falsifying the records of other New York enterprises and mischaracterizing the nature of the repayment for tax purposes.’ …….

    For the purposes of tax violations, Bragg relies on two related tax provisions: New York Tax Law §§ 1801(a)(3) & 1802. Section 1801(a) sets out relevant tax fraud acts, with subsection (3) prohibiting “knowingly suppl[ying] or submit[ting] materially false or fraudulent information in connection with any [tax] return, audit, investigation, or proceeding.” The tax fraud includes four elements: (1) a tax document filed, submitted or supplied; (2) falsity; (3) materiality; and (4) intent (willfulness). Any person who commits a tax fraud act, including under 1801(a)(3), is guilty, at a minimum, of criminal tax fraud in the fifth degree, a Class A misdemeanor crime under Section 1802, where the tax liability is less than $3,000. No additional mens rea is required, such as an intent to evade taxes or defraud the state. In this case, the primary alleged tax violation was Cohen falsely declaring the reimbursement as income, which artificially increased his tax liability. As Justice Merchan already found, however, an allegation of tax fraud where the state “was not financially harmed … and instead would wind up collecting more tax revenue” does not preclude the tax violation from being a predicate act for the first degree falsification of business records.

    Source, paragraphs b & c.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  393. https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/27/opinion/columbia-university-protests.html

    …: The Columbia that has become the primary stage for political drama in America still requires its students to encounter what it calls “cornerstone ideas and theories from across literature, philosophy, history, science and the arts.”

    …The Columbia core’s requirements include many of the traditional great books — Genesis and Job, Aeschylus and Shakespeare, Adam Smith and Alexis de Tocqueville — along with readings in the sciences and exposure to music and fine arts. They also include sources obviously intended to diversify the traditional core and bring it up to date — some from the medieval and early modern past, many from the 20th century.

    I want to look in particular at the syllabus for “Contemporary Civilization,” the portion of the core that deals most with political arguments and authors. The pre-20th-century readings follow traditional patterns (Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau) with specific supplements that diversify the list: more Islamic writers in the Middle Ages, Christine De Pizan alongside Machiavelli, a raft of readings on the conquest of the Americas, the Haitian Declaration of Independence and Constitution alongside the American Declaration and Bill of Rights.

    But then comes the 20th century, and suddenly the ambit narrows to progressive preoccupations and only those preoccupations: anticolonialism, sex and gender, antiracism, climate. Frantz Fanon and Michel Foucault. Barbara Fields and the Combahee River Collective. Meditations on the trans-Atlantic slave trade and how climate change is “colonial déjà vu.”

    ,,,To understand the world before 1900, Columbia students read a range of texts and authors that are important to understanding America and the West in their entirety — Greek and Roman, religious and secular, capitalist and Marxist.

    To engage with the contemporary world, the world they are being prepared to influence and lead, they read texts that are important to understanding only the perspective of the contemporary left.

    Of course, these reading lists can change, and the way they are taught will vary with the instructor. But the priorities of Columbia’s canon fit a wider trend. I speak to college students and high school students fairly often, and it is common to meet kids whose entire sense of contemporary political challenges consists of racism and climate change. (Note that these are usually children of the upper middle class; 18-to-29-year-olds in general are more likely to be worried about economic issues.) They are not necessarily enthusiastically embracing these causes; if they’re talking to me, they’re more likely to be disillusioned. But this is the scope of ideas they’re being given about what an educated person should find concerning or worthy of attention.

    This has two effects, one general and one specific to the current protests at Columbia. The first effect is a dramatic intellectual and historical narrowing. In the Columbia curriculum’s 20th-century readings, the age of totalitarianism simply evanesces, leaving decolonization as the only major political drama of the recent past. There is no Orwell, no Solzhenitsyn; Hannah Arendt’s essays on the Vietnam War and student protests in America are assigned but not “The Origins of Totalitarianism” or “Eichmann in Jerusalem.”

    Eichmann in Jerusalem isn’t so goof. This was the thing that the banality of evil came from. Someone wrote a whole book arguing against it “And the Crooked Shall be made Straight” The banality of evil was how Eichmann made it appear. But actually, to Eichmann, murdering people was like running up the score in a pinball machine.

    More:

    Absent, too, are any readings that would shed light on the ideas that the contemporary left is ranged against: There is no neoconservatism, certainly no religious conservatism, but also nothing that would make sense of neoliberalism in all its variations. There is no Francis Fukuyama, no “end of history” debate. Class critiques are mostly invisible, left behind in the 19th century with Karl Marx. And there are no readings that focus on the technological or spiritual aspects of the present or offer cultural critiques from a nonprogressive vantage point — no Philip Rieff, no Neil Postman, no Christopher Lasch.

    This narrowing, in turn, leaves students with an equally narrow list of outlets for the world-changing energy that they’re constantly exhorted to embrace. Conservatism of any sort is naturally off limits. A center-left stewardship seems like selling out. There’s no clear path to engagement with many key dramas of our time — renewed civilizational competition, the stresses of digital existence, existential anomie.

    Climate change looms over everything, but climate activism is expected be merged somehow with anticolonial and antiracist action. Yet it’s actually quite difficult to make anticolonialist preoccupations map onto a world where Western Europe is aging and declining and once-colonized populations now fill its major cities, where the locus of world power has shifted into Asia, where the world’s most tyrannical and imperialist regimes are non-Western and nonwhite.

    Douhat argues that The situation with Israel is the only place where their preoccupations bear some (limited) relationship to reality.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  394. #401 Sammy – Interesting piece. Who wrote it?

    Jim Miller (0cc49d)

  395. @402. Ross Douthat

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  396. I would add Hoffer’s “The True Believer” to that list. I would also want significant attention to the Cold War, as it was a study in diplomacy working.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  397. Biden’s message of “If you elect Trump we’ll have chaos” is getting kinda weak. Of course, Trump’s “law & order” message is itself a bit dim given his legal problems.

    But this is the best this great country, and its two great parties, can offer.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  398. With Trump, the fraud is sure to follow, and the next shoe to drop is Trump’s Truth Social CPAs. If he’s not committing fraud himself, he’s hiring fraud accountants.

    The auditing firm for Trump Media and the auditor’s owner were charged Friday with “massive fraud” by the Securities and Exchange Commission for work that affected more than 1,500 SEC filings, the federal regulator announced.

    The auditor, BF Borgers CPA and its owner Benjamin Borgers have agreed to be permanently suspended from practicing as accountants before the SEC, and also agreed to pay a combined $14 million in civil penalties, without admitting or denying the allegations, the SEC said.

    The agency, calling BF Borgers a “sham audit mill,” said the company and its owner engaged in “deliberate and systemic failures to comply with Public Company Accounting Oversight Board … standards in its audits and reviews incorporated in more than 1,500 SEC filings from January 2021 through June 2023,” according to a press release.

    BF Borgers during that same time acted as the auditor for Trump Media, which was then privately held and moving toward a planned merger with the publicly traded shell company Digital World Acquisition Corp.

    However, Borgers may have gotten it right when they questioned Trump’s media platform’s ability to continue as a going concern which, in NormalWorld, is a death knell for a company.

    Paul Montagu (895dc0)

  399. We’re not in Kansas anymore.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  400. If W could run again, he’d be a landslide victor against these two clowns.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  401. I doubt that.

    BuDuh (4214e4)

  402. Paul, has this come up on your National Zero feed?

    https://edition.cnn.com/2024/05/03/politics/henry-cuellar-indictment-doj/index.html

    BuDuh (4214e4)

  403. #403 lurker – Thanks, much.

    Jim Miller (35b333)

  404. Is this also lawfare? The Woke hate the man:

    Rep. Henry Cuellar accused of taking bribes from Azerbaijan, Mexican bank

    Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Tex.) and his wife allegedly accepted $600,000 in bribes from an oil company controlled by the Azerbaijan government and a bank headquartered in Mexico, according to a federal indictment unsealed in Texas on Friday.

    The 68-year-old congressman and his wife, Imelda Cuellar, are accused of setting up front companies that entered into sham contracts with the two entities, the indictment said.

    According to the indictment, Cuellar agreed to use his position as a congressman to positively influence U.S. foreign policies for Azerbaijan. In exchange for the Mexican bank bribes, Cuellar agreed to push policies that would benefit the bank, the indictment said.

    Both husband and wife face charges that include money laundering, conspiracy to commit bribery of a federal official, wire fraud and more.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  405. Is is possible that, not wanting to deal with the mess, both candidates are trying to throw the election to the other guy? Because neither one seems to demonstrate leadership or ability.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  406. Kevin M, I wouldn’t put it past today’s DNC to frame Cuellar. That’s how much they hate pro-lifers.

    qdpsteve again (711764)

  407. Arizona 1864 abortion law repealed.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/1/2024 @ 1:40 pm

    Because the repeal didn’t include an emergency provision allowing it take effect immediately, the “repeal” won’t become law until July.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 5/2/2024 @ 9:23 am

    Correction: The Arizona Constitution requires any repeal to wait 90 days after the legislative session ends, so it could be as late as October or November before the repeal takes effect.

    Rip Murdock (1803bc)

  408. @411. You’re welcome, Jim.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  409. Judge corrects Trump’s claim that gag order prevents his testimony
    https://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/4641378-trump-hush-money-trial-judge-gag-order-testimony/

    This was interesting after yesterday’s trial. Trump claimed that his gag order was preventing him from testifying and that the gag order was unprecedented.

    I’m curious if he is just this stupid…or if he’s just that mendacious….or some combination of the two. The gag order does not prevent him from complaining about the proceeding, the judge, the prosecutor, or the witch hunt generally. He just can’t complain about jurors and ancillary court people. He is allowed to testify in court…or not to if he prefers.

    This is the GOP’s leading voice. How embarrassing.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  410. There is a new weekend thread, AJ.

    BuDuh (3ac755)

  411. Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Tex.) and his wife allegedly accepted $600,000 in bribes

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 5/3/2024 @ 11:49 am

    He should have hid the $600,000 in his freezer. Dummy.

    norcal (52c77c)

  412. I’m curious if he is just this stupid…or if he’s just that mendacious….or some combination of the two.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 5/3/2024 @ 3:42 pm

    Trump isn’t stupid. I think his detractors make a big mistake when they say that.

    It’s mendacious all the way. Like Paul Montague, my default take is that Trump is lying, until proven otherwise.

    norcal (52c77c)

  413. I’m curious if he is just this stupid…or if he’s just that mendacious

    Deceive Inveigle Obfuscate

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  414. He’s always mendacious. And he’s not stupid. But he is obstinately ignorant.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  415. Paul, has this come up on your National Zero feed?

    Troll said what?

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

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